Horton’s disease

Horton’s disease is a systemic vasculitis, characterized by the defeat of temporal artery, permanent intensive, more frequent by one-sided head pain, and also pain in eyes, which radiate to the temple. The symptoms of Horton’s disease are similar with the symptoms of cluster headache, however the mechanism of their origin differentiates. Cluster headache is one-sided intense headache, which is manifested by a series of attacks in a limited period of time (from 2 weeks to 3 months), followed by long-term remission. Attacks proceed from 15 minutes to 3 hours and repeat oneself once or twice in days, more frequent at night. During an attack there is sweating, redness of the skin, runny nose, watery eyes, dilated pupils, redness and swelling of the eye on the affected side, and nausea. There can be periods of apnea on the nosedive of attack.


  • One-sided head pain of a temporal-eye localization.
  • Attacks of head pain in a night-time.
  • Attacks go by series 1-4 times per days.
  • Redness of the eyes, watery eyes.
  • Nasal congestion, rhinorrhea (runny nose).
  • Redness of the skin, swelling, sweating.


Causes of Horton’s disease are unknown. It is assumed that pain is caused the action of serotonin or some other matter, look like this tissue hormone. A serotonin stimulates the smooth muscles of walls of blood vessels. Surplus of similar on a serotonin matters in an organism can become reason of strong attacks of pains. It is possible that surplus of these matters arises up under the action of stress or alcohol.


For treatment of Horton’s disease doctors apply calming preparations, medications, making better circulation of blood of cerebrum, analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs, hormones and oxygen.

To decrease pain during an attack is very uneasily. Sometimes a contrasting shower and tea from a valerian helps to reduce pain.

Severe headache compels patients immediately consult a doctor.

For Horton’s disease specific symptoms are characteristic, therefore a doctor easily diagnoses disease. Then he or she assigns the patient necessary medicines.

Course of the disease

Men suffer from Horton’s disease pain in 4 times more frequent, than women. In addition, it is observed mainly for men in age 50 years. As a rule, head pain arises up at night, after 2-3 hours after backfilling. Pain is localized in an eyeball and radiates to the temple. There is tearing, nasal congestion is observed on the affected side, and then – runny nose, redness of the skin and eyes. Usually these symptoms are observed during a few clock, sometimes they pass quick. In the morning, the patient does not feel any ailments. These headaches occur in series, with weeks and even months.

Is Horton’s disease dangerous?

Night headache does not allow a person to sleep, as a result of this the normal rhythm of life is disrupted. Patients have anxiety, nervousness. Headache can cause a decrease in physical and mental activity.

In spite of the fact that the clinical displays of Horton’s disease and migraine are similar, the methods of treatment of these diseases are different.

People, who avoid stressful situations and leading an active lifestyle, suffer from Horton’s disease very rarely. For many patients the procatarxiss of attack are the physical activity, mental stress, and also alcohol consumption.