A Case Report About Cluster-Tic Syndrome Due to Venous Compression of the Trigeminal Nerve

Authors: Ilse de Coo MD, J. Marc C. van Dijk MD, PhD, Jan D.M. Metzemaekers MD, PhD, Joost Haan MD, PhD
Source: Headache, 7 December 2016



The term “cluster-tic syndrome” is used for the rare ipsilateral co-occurrence of attacks of cluster headache and trigeminal neuralgia. Medical treatment should combine treatment for cluster headache and trigeminal neuralgia, but is very often unsatisfactory.


Here, we describe a 41-year-old woman diagnosed with cluster-tic syndrome who underwent microvascular decompression of the trigeminal nerve, primarily aimed at the “trigeminal neuralgia” part of her pain syndrome. After venous decompression of the trigeminal nerve both a decrease in trigeminal neuralgia and cluster headache attacks was seen. However, the headache did not disappear completely. Furthermore, she reported a decrease in pain intensity of the remaining cluster headache attacks.


This case description suggests that venous vascular decompression in cluster-tic syndrome can be remarkably effective, both for trigeminal neuralgia and cluster headache.

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