Botox for Chronic Migraine Treatment
If you suffer from crippling chronic migraines and have been unable to find long term relief from pain, Botox could be the answer.
More than just a cosmetic treatment, Botox has a wide variety of medical uses, one of which is Chronic Migraine Treatment. As an FDA-approved treatment method, Botox is helping hundreds of people to cut the frequency of their headaches and migraines in half. Could it be the answer to your debilitating struggle with pain?
What is chronic migraine?
Although headaches and migraines can affect almost anyone, Chronic Migraine is a defined condition in which suffers experience:
- 15 or more headaches days each month
- 8 or more migraines during those headache days
- Headaches which last for 4 or more hours each
3.2 million people in the US currently suffer from Chronic Migraine – that’s one in 10 people. Not only this, but it is believed that only 36% of patients are diagnosed with Chronic Migraine, despite meeting the criteria defined above. That means that thousands of people are living with chronic head pain without an official diagnosis and access to treatment.
The clinical trials
Clinical trials into the efficacy of Botox as a Chronic Migraine treatment were conducted and proved that Botox is a successful treatment. The studies were randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled, and involved the participation of over 1384 patients.
The trials found that patients experienced between eight and nine fewer headaches each month, and that many patients reported a 50% or more reduction in headache days every month.
It’s important to note that the reduction in headaches occurs gradually over the course of 24 weeks. So, although Botox is not a quick, immediate relief from Chronic Migraine, it is an excellent preventative treatment that will slowly help you to experience fewer painful headache days.
Right now, Botox is the only Chronic Migraine treatment approved by the FDA as a suitable prevention of Chronic Migraine. Although you may currently use pain relief medication to manage the condition, no other prescribed drug is able to prevent Chronic Migraine like Botox can.
How the treatment works
In order to achieve the best results, you will be given two initial Botox Chronic Migraine treatments 12 weeks apart. After the first 24 weeks, your doctor will assess the efficacy of the treatment and if you’re satisfied with the results, will recommend that you undergo repeat Botox treatments roughly every 12 weeks in order to maintain the results.
Botox, as you may already know, is administered by injection. The whole procedure usually takes just 15 minutes and can be performed in your physicians office. The Botox is injected in seven different areas throughout the head and neck area, but the injections are only very shallow and administered with a very slim needle.
In total, each Chronic Migraine treatment involves a total of 31 injections – this may seem like a large amount, but since they are so shallow they can be performed very quickly and without too much discomfort. Most patients would not describe the procedure as painful by any means, and they do not need to take any time out to recover once the Chronic Migraine treatment is over.
Is Botox the right treatment for me?
Currently, the efficacy of Botox is only known for those who have been diagnosed with Chronic Migraine and suffer from 15 or more headache days each month. If you believe that you’ve been living with Chronic Migraine, you should visit your doctor for a consultation and to discuss the possibility of undergoing Botox Chronic Migraine treatment. First, you need to be armed with knowledge about the headaches you suffer from.
Start keeping a headache diary and bring it with you to every doctor’s appointment. In it, you should note down each day you had a headache or migraine, and an estimate of how long you experienced it for. For some, it may be easier to keep track of the days where you didn’t have a headache, because if you suffer from them regularly your headache-free days are likely the ones you’ll remember best.
Headache days include those in which you took medicine to treat the symptoms of a headache. It can be beneficial to let your doctor know of any medications you currently take for migraines, so make a note of these in your headache diary, too.
With all this information to hand, your doctor will be able to better assess your situation and make a diagnosis of Chronic Migraine if applicable. Then, you can start discussing the possibility of treating your condition with Botox.
Book a consultation at Austin Family Medicine today to take the first step towards relief from Chronic Migraine pain.