I just found an Iraqi study on the prevalence of Eagle Syndrome among patients with severe chronic headache and migraine. The results are illuminating. I’ll just put the link in here and summarise the most important findings:
Of 100 patients with severe headache, the 3D pictures showed that 34 had problems with the styloid process. 7 had an elongated styloid process and 27 had a fractured styloid process (the latter is considered to be a pretty rare occurence), unilaterally or bilaterally.
The study was conducted using 3D-CT, which is considered to be superior to different diagnostic tools. This complies with the experience people shared in this forum.
Eagle Syndrome was the most frequent cause for chronic headache (34%), followed by cervical vertebra pain (22%), TMJ pain (8%), ENT pain (9%), and other causes of craniofacial pain (27%).
“The syndrome of all patients isolated by brain trauma CT scan multi-detectors
with increase the FOV downward then treated by injection of local anesthesia and corticosteroid. 85% of them got remission.” Not sure whether I understand this correctly: It might mean that either all patients or just patients suffering from Eagle got local anesthesia and corticosteroid. Either way, 85% experienced allevation of pain.
I consider this to be crucial. Lots of patients with chronic headaches could be helped if doctors understood how to properly diagnose Eagle syndrome. Whether you have an elongated styloid process, calcified ligaments, a styloid process in a bad angle or even a fractured styloid process - via 3D-CT it is fairly easy to diagnose Eagle Syndrome and subsequently help patients with adequate measures (whether conservatively or surgically). Especially the frequency of fractured styloid processes in this study is shocking: After all, it is a broken bone, and none of these patients got this diagnosis before. I’d assume most of them saw lots of doctors before they took part in this study since chronic headaches aren’t a condition one takes lightly. It just wears you down.
It is important to raise awareness of this, which is why this forum is great. I could go on for longer, but staring at my laptop for too long intensifies my headache.
Thanks for reading!