How Long After LP Does A Headache Last (And Why)?

How Long After LP Does A Headache Last (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Ten Days

LP is the short form or abbreviation of the medical term Lumbar Puncture. It is popularly known as Spinal Tap in many parts of the world. In this process, Cerebrospinal fluid, also known as CF, is taken from the patient’s spinal canal. To take out the fluid, a needle is inserted into the canal.

The main reason behind the process of a Lumbar Puncture is to help the patient fight the diseases related to CNS or the Central Nervous System along with the spine and the brain. One of these conditions is Hemorrhage or meningitis. It is performed by many medical experts in different parts of the world, and it is also very effective.

How Long After LP Does A Headache Last

How Long After LP Does A Headache Last?

Walter Essex Wynter, a Physician, residing in London of the United Kingdom, first introduced the Lumbar Puncture technique to extract the fluid from the spinal canal. He started his practices in 1889, and it took him two years to succeed in the technique. In 1891 he presented this process to other medical experts. In the beginning, many people feared that this technique might not be beneficial because its efficacy was not proven at that time. But with modern innovations, new technologies kept arriving, and the efficacy of this technique was proven. Now, this practice is considered safe and is also very effective.

Many components are present in the spinal canal fluid, and after the extraction of the fluid, these components can be examined. It can be determined whether a patient is suffering from some problem or not. If a person is infected with some bacteria, it will surely be present in the patient’s Cerebrospinal fluid. Apart from this, traces of Viruses can also be found in this fluid. If there are any other simpler methods to determine bacteria or viruses, it should be done; otherwise, this method is considered safe.

EventsInformation Regarding The Events
Time after LP for the headache to startThree to four days
Time after LP for the headache to disappearTen days

Headaches start after three to four days of the Lumbar procedure, and they can go up to ten days. Several medications are there to tackle the headache.

Why Does A Headache Last That Long After LP?

The procedure of a Lumbar puncture is effortless and straightforward. First and foremost, the patient is asked to turn on the left side. After that, the patient needs to slide down their head and pull their legs upward so that the spine can come out as much as possible. This is done because it helps the doctor identify the spine more easily, and the chances of human error get minimized. After this, a needle is inserted into the spinal canal, and the fluid is extracted from it. It is normal to feel a bit sore on the spine for a few days. Therefore it is advised not to sleep on the back for two weeks after the Lumbar Puncture.

This process is not recommended for children as their spine is weak, and the chances of medical injuries are also more. However, if there is no option and necessary to carry out this procedure, it is done. A patient can feel a lot of pressure on the spine when the needle is inserted, but this is completed in a few minutes. Local anesthesia is given to the patient to minimize the pain in the body, but internal swelling can occur, which might be excruciating for the patient.


Headaches last for that long after LP because of a fall in the CSF volume in the body. After the needle is taken out, the fluid keeps on leaking very slowly from where the needle was inserted. This can lead to continuous headaches. However, the headache goes away after a few days.


Overall, it can be concluded that LP refers to Lumbar Puncture, and in this process, a fluid is taken out from the spinal canal with the help of a needle. Lumbar Puncture helps the patient fight the CNS or the Central Nervous System and the spine and the brain. The process can make the spine area a bit sore.

On average, headaches disappear after ten days of the process. It is normal to feel a bit of dizziness because of fluid loss. However, these symptoms die down on their own and don’t require separate medical attention. In case of any medical emergency, it is advised to visit a medical expert.


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23 thoughts on “How Long After LP Does A Headache Last (And Why)?”

  1. The detailed explanation of the Lumbar Puncture process and its post-procedure effects is presented eloquently. It’s an informative piece for both medical professionals and the general public.

  2. The comprehensive explanation of the Lumbar Puncture process is enlightening. I appreciate the emphasis on its efficacy and safety.

    1. Indeed, Megan. The attention to detail in explaining the efficacy of Lumbar Puncture is commendable.

    2. Absolutely, Megan. The safety and efficacy of the procedure are essential points that are well-highlighted here.

  3. The explanation about why headaches persist post-Lumbar Puncture is comprehensive and informative. It’s a valuable piece of information for prospective patients.

    1. Absolutely, Jim. The depth of information regarding post-procedure headaches is both enlightening and practical.

  4. This is a fascinating historical account of the Lumbar Puncture technique. Thank you for providing such detailed insights.

    1. I totally agree with you, Ellis. It’s rare to find such profound historical information about medical techniques!

  5. The explanation of the Lumbar Puncture process is quite informative and useful for understanding the medical intricacies involved.

    1. Indeed, Hyoung. The detailed insights are immensely valuable for anyone seeking to comprehend this medical procedure.

  6. Avatar of George Robinson
    George Robinson

    The detailed account of the historical origins of Lumbar Puncture is engrossing. It adds a layer of historical context to a well-explained medical process.

    1. Well said, George. It’s remarkable to delve into the historical roots of medical techniques alongside their modern-day understanding.

    2. Absolutely, George. The historical background of medical procedures always adds depth and perspective to the subject matter.

  7. The information provided about Lumbar Puncture is crucial for enhancing public knowledge. It’s an essential medical procedure worth understanding.

    1. Absolutely, Ross. It’s important to raise awareness about medical procedures such as Lumbar Puncture.

  8. The conclusion provides a great summary of Lumbar Puncture and its post-procedure effects. It’s a helpful piece for understanding the broader picture.

    1. Absolutely, Phoebe. The conclusive insights about Lumbar Puncture’s post-procedure effects are valuable for anyone interested in this subject.

  9. The insights on the duration of headaches post-Lumbar Puncture are enlightening. It’s essential information for individuals considering this procedure.

    1. Absolutely, Smurray. Understanding the expected course of headaches post-procedure is crucial for patient awareness.

  10. The detailed explanation of why headaches last post-Lumbar Puncture is enlightening. The insights into the CSF volume dynamics are fascinating.

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