The nerves that run from the top of the spinal cord up through the scalp are known as occipital nerves. A medical condition in which occipital nerves gets inflamed or injured is called Occipital Neuralgia. Dr Anil Dhingra, a well-experienced neurosurgeon in Chandigarh highlights the symptoms and causes of Occipital Neuralgia.


Many times, the pain is confused with migraine or other types of headache as the symptoms are similar. However, the treatments are different so it is essential to get it diagnosed from a doctor.

Symptoms of Occipital Neuralgia include:

  • Aching and throbbing pain which begins at the base of the head and goes to the scalp.
  • One or both sides of the head aching.
  • Pain behind the eye.
  • Increased Sensitivity to light.
  • A Tender scalp.
  • Pain in the movement of the neck.


Pressure or irritation on the occipital nerve because of injury could be the reason behind Occipital Neuralgia. Besides this some medical conditions that are linked to it are as follows:

  • Trauma received by the back of the head.
  • Tightening of neck muscles.
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Cervical disc disease
  • Inflammation of blood vessels.


When encountered with pain you can try some home remedies for temporary relief which includes:

  • Applying heat to the neck.
  • Taking some rest in an isolated dark place.
  • Massage the painful muscles of the neck.

Once you are temporarily relieved of the pain, immediately see a Neurosurgeon who may write you some anti-inflammatory medicines, muscle relaxants or nerve blocks depending on your condition.

Occipital Neuralgia is not a chronic disease and in most of the cases can be treated with medication and resting. However, in some rare cases, surgery is recommended by the best surgeon in Chandigarh.