Supraorbital neuralgia is characterized by persistent pain in the supraorbital region and forehead with occasional sudden, shock-like paresthesias in the distribution of the supraorbital nerve. Supraorbital neuralgia is the result of compression or trauma of the supraorbital nerves as the nerves exit the supraorbital foramen. Such trauma can be in the form of blunt trauma directly to the nerve, such as when the forehead hits the steering wheel during a motor vehicle accident, or repetitive microtrauma resulting from wearing welding or swimming goggles that are too tight. This clinical syndrome also is known as swimmer’s headache.
The headache might not present for many years until the scar cicatrix tightens enough around the nerve to finally cause entrapment.