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Q: My Doctor Referred Me for Botox Injections for My Migraines. Can This Be Right?

  • Category: Doctor Q&A
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: NSPC Team

Answer: Chronic migraine headaches are debilitating and can affect every aspect of a person’s life. You may be suffering from a chronic migraine condition if you experience a headache for 15 or more days a month and the headaches last for hours to days. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, continue reading to learn how Botox Injections could help relieve your pain.

Fortunately, new treatment options are being developed to help mitigate the extreme pain that migraines cause. In late 2010, botulinum toxin, more commonly known as Botox, was FDA approved as treatment to prevent chronic migraine headaches.

If your headaches don’t seem to be well controlled on your current medication regimen, you may be a candidate for this treatment.

How Botox Is Used to Treat Migraines

For years, Botox injections have been used to relax spastic muscles in children with cerebral palsy and in patients with spasticity in their limbs after stroke or spinal cord injury. In a similar fashion, Botox relieves migraine pain by relaxing the muscles in the face and head.

As an added benefit, studies have shown Botox has a possible anti-inflammatory effect. It may even play a role in blocking pain signals from reaching the brain.

Additional Questions to Consider
  • How often can it be used and how long does it last? Administered at an NSPC office, Botox injections for migraine headaches can be repeated every 12 weeks if necessary. The effects however, can last up to six months.
  • Do the injections hurt? No, Botox injections do not typically cause any significant soreness. Some noted side effects include temporary flu-like symptoms, but this is relatively rare. There have been some reported issues regarding Botox spreading minimally from the area of injection, but the effects are temporary.
  • Is Botox right for me? Proper evaluation and diagnosis is key, and always the first step for patients at National Spine & Pain Centers.

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