Short-Lasting Unilateral Neuralgiform Headache With Conjunctival Injection and Tearing (SUNCT)
(See also Approach to the Patient With Headache.)
Short-lasting unilateral neuralgiform headache with conjunctival injection and tearing (SUNCT) is a rare headache disorder characterized by extremely frequent attacks of unilateral head pain and autonomic activation.
SUNCT, like cluster headache, is a primary headache disorder characterized by unilateral pain in the trigeminal nerve distribution and by autonomic manifestations. As such, SUNCT and cluster headaches are sometimes grouped together as trigeminal autonomic cephalgias.
In SUNCT, pain paroxysms are typically periorbital, are extremely frequent (up to 200/day), and last from 5 to 250 sec. Conjunctival injection is often the most prominent autonomic feature; tearing may also be obvious.
Diagnosis of SUNCT is clinical.
SUNCT should be distinguished from trigeminal neuralgia, which causes similar symptoms; SUNCT differs in that