Botox is most famous for its amazing ability to smooth a wrinkled brow, so it is not surprising that its many other uses are less known. But In fact, off-label uses of Botox have become commonplace, as the FDA reviews research on more than 6 novel uses and 90+ patents. Botox has fewer contraindications and rarer side-effects than most traditionally prescribed medications making it a very attractive alternative treatment. One of the approved uses of Botox is for the treatment of headaches.
The Scope of Migraines
Since 2012, Botox has been FDA approved for treatment of chronic migraine headaches in adults. Chronic Migraine (CM) is one of the most debilitating conditions common to humans. Sufferers experience intense pulsating or throbbing pain that is commonly accompanied by sensitivity to light and nausea. It is estimated that migraine headaches affect around 12% of Americans. That is more than asthma and diabetes combined. Those suffering from the chronic form of the condition experience the disabling headaches as many as 14 times each month. The condition tends to affect all areas of life; social, professional ,and personal. The long-term effects include premature aging, depression, anxiety and permanent changes in brain structure.
Men are Helped
Migraine headaches are more commonly associated with women. However, studies suggest that as many as 1 in 18 men suffer from migraines. Cluster Headaches (CH), a form of migraine in which the patient feels pain on one side of the head more than the other, affects men two and a half times more frequently than women. This headache is so debilitating it has frighteningly been called the “suicide headache.” The use of Botox in treating severe chronic headaches in men is still being researched but many physicians are prescribing the treatment.
Preferred over Opiates
Botox injections are proven to be effective in relieving the recurrence of headaches in patients for up to 3 months. Even more impressive, Botox is helping patients who have not experienced relief by other means, including potentially addictive prescription medications. Amid the nation’s opioid addiction epidemic this is an important consideration.
A Happy Accident
Like so many great medical advancements, the Botox effect was discovered coincidentally. CM sufferers who were undergoing a Botox regimen for the treatment of wrinkles began to notice an improvement in their migraines. FDA approval was then pursued in order to obtain insurance reimbursement for the medical application. Currently, appropriately prescribed Botox for the treatment of Chronic Migraine is covered by most major insurance.
Dr. Florencia R. Guzman has over 30 years helping patients look and feel better. Call us today and discover how Botox therapy can help you have a pain-free tomorrow.
The knowledgeable friendly staff at Reflection Medical Spa can be reached at (513) 671-2411