Botulinum Toxin for Migraines
Botulinum Toxin (commonly referred to by the brand name “Botox”) belongs to a group of biologic drugs that are produced from living things.
Botox or botulinum toxin A is a decontaminated protein that is derived from a category of bacteria known as Clostridium botulinum type A.
Botulinum Toxin, according to data analysis, is proven to be effective in lessening chronic migraine occurrence.
Migraine is a kind of disorder by recurrent severe headache attacks that cause pulsating pain, usually on one side of the head. It also causes nausea and vomiting. One will also feel a tremendous sensitivity against light and sound that intensifies the throbbing headache.
Technology has found a treatment for this chronic migraine with the use of Botulinum Toxin. In 2010, FDA approved the “Botox” injections to be effective in treating chronic migraines. In 2012, “Botox” for migraine was registered for the prevention of chronic migraine in adults.
According to the studies, 50% of those who had “Botox” treatment for migraine saw that their migraine attacks were reduced by 50% over their 2 weeks of treatment. And 70% of the 1,384 adults who had undergone the “Botox” treatment for migraines experienced less migraine attacks in the study done by the Phase III Research Evaluating Migraine Prophylaxis Therapy (PREEMPT).
Though the mechanism on how Botulinum Toxin really works is not yet defined, it is believed that the toxin thwarts certain chemicals from getting into the nerve, thus preventing migraine attacks.
Risks and Complications
These are rare and often only temporary, however, they may include:
- Bruising of the area where the toxin was injected
- Headache or the feeling of having flu
- Neck pain
- Allergic reactions (itchy welts or rashes)
And if the injections were not administered correctly, the chemical may spread into the adjoining tissues and may cause the following:
- Crooked smile
- Drooping of the eyelids
- Uneven eyebrows
- Excessive tearing or dry eye
- Weakening of the muscles all over the body
- Difficulty in speaking
- Swallowing problems that may last for a couple of months
- Vision problems
- Uncontrolled bladder
- Difficulty in breathing
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q. Is Botulinum Toxin for migraine safe for pregnant women?
A. It is not safe for breast feeding and pregnant women.
Q. How often do I need to undergo Botulinum Toxin treatment?
A. Injections are administered every three months until further advice by your doctor.
Q. Is the Botulinum Toxin for migraine a safe procedure?
A. As with any procedure, ensure you are consulting with a qualified practitioner. It is usually safe as long as it is done carefully and correctly or else it may cause life threatening side effects.