Lymph node compression of the lesser occipital nerve: A cause of migraine

Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, College of Medicine, Catholic University of Korea, Uijongbu St. Mary's Hospital, 65-1 Kumoh-Dong, Uijongbu 480-135, Republic of Korea.
Journal of Plastic Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery (Impact Factor: 1.42). 05/2011; 64(12):1657-60. DOI: 10.1016/j.bjps.2011.04.007
Source: PubMed


Recent investigation has focussed on the concept of peripherally triggered migraine headaches caused by compression, irritation or entrapment of the sensory nerves in the head and neck. We report a case of a 52-year-old male suffering from an occipitoparietal migraine that presented with a mass in the right occipital area. The mass was found in the deep layer of subcutaneous tissue just over the semispinalis muscle, sitting on top of the lesser occipital nerve, which was preserved through delicate dissection using loupe magnification. Histopathological findings of the mass reported benign, reactive hyperplasia of the lymph node. After removal of the mass, the patient reported complete resolution of headaches. Sensation of the scalp was not altered. This is the first report of a case of hyperplastic lymph node causing migraine through physical compression of a peripheral nerve.

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