Treating Chronic Migraines with BOTOX® and Migraine Surgery
Migraines are headaches that are so severe that they are debilitating. They are characterized by a pulsating, throbbing pain. Migraine sufferers are sensitive to light, sound, and other stimuli. It is estimated that 12 percent of the US population are affected by migraines. According to the FDA, many patients have migraines that are so severe they affect them fourteen days or more of the month.
Migraines affect a person’s ability to have a normal family, social, and work life. Thankfully, there are two treatment options available that have shown some promise.
Using Botox to Treat Migraines
When people think about BOTOX®, they associate it with a facial rejuvenation treatment designed to minimize the wrinkles and fine lines associated with aging. However, the FDA approved BOTOX® as a way to treat migraines.
It is administered to a patient once every twelve weeks. The injections are given on the head and around the neck. The goal is to lessen the impact of future headaches. According to the FDA, BOTOX® is to be used on patients who have migraines or who suffer headaches more than 15 days a year, with the headaches lasting four hours a day or more.
Migraine sufferers may receive a number of BOTOX® injections at selected points of the neck and head. When administered according to the FDA’s recommendations, it can produce results in a patient that last for up to three months.
The FDA only approved BOTOX® treatments for migraines after extensive studies involving more than 1,300 adults in North America and Europe. A study that was published in March 2010 shows that the patients who underwent the study had a major decrease in the frequency of migraine headaches and the duration of the headaches.
Understanding Migraine Surgery
It was a Cleveland plastic surgeon who first stumbled across the positive effects that surgery could have on migraine sufferers. He received multiple reports of patients commenting on migraine relief after they had a brow lift surgery. Further research shows that the reason for migraine relief was because the supraorbital nerve was released during the procedure. Since that time, the medical community has been improving the surgical options available to provide permanent relief from migraine headaches.
Further studies have been done on other nerves that are connected to migraines. This has allowed physicians to create treatments to decompress these nerves. These treatments share characteristics with treatments used to decompress nerves during carpal tunnel syndrome surgery.
Migraine surgery could be an option for patients who are not responding to medication or those who are responding to medication but are showing bad side effects to the medication used to treat their migraines.
If you suffer from migraines and want to learn more about your options, contact Princeton Plastic Surgeons today to schedule a consultation.