Can botox help reduce migraine headaches? Not all patients can successfully respond to oral treatment given by doctors to patients with chronic migraine. This is the reason why some patients find other ways to treat or find relief to reduce migraine symptoms.
Botox-A or Botox or OnabotulinumtoxinA was approved in 2010 by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the US as a treatment for migraine and is now widely used as a treatment for chronic migraine. Botox is an injectible medicine that contains toxic bacterium known as clostridium botulinum.
Botox has been used for reducing wrinkles which usually appear on the skin of aging persons and is injected to skin portion where wrinkles appear. However, it can also be injected in many doses to specific portions of the head particularly in the forehead, temples, back of the head and the upper back and also in the neck to treat migraine. Immediate relief does not happen right away upon injection performance of botox treatment. Instead, initial relief happens only after 10 to 14 days. There are even patients who do not respond after the initial set of injections but additional treatments within a 15 month span are always successful. A treatment is given once in three months within this 15 month period.
Doctors recommend Botox treatment only after other treatments such as migraine medicines are not effective or when the patient does not reliably tolerate migraine medications. Botox treatment may be expensive for migraine treatment but some health insurance providers cover expenses for migraine treatment using Botox.However, it is still best to discuss this option with your insurance company prior to undergoing Botox treatment. Some health insurance companies require some tests before they cover expenses for Botox treatment.
Just like any other medicines, Botox can result to some complications and side effects. The most common side effects are stiffness at the injection site, headache as well as neck pain. There may also be temporary muscle weakness at the neck and upper shoulders, making the patient uncomfortable when keeping his or head upright. However, these side effects fade away as days go by. Botox treatment when applied is painless and only gives a little sting during each injection. The side effects and the sting are considered minor discomforts leading to headache-free days.