Study: Botox treatments most effective for chronic, non-tension-type headaches
May 23, 2012
A new study conducted by scientists at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee suggests that Botox injections may offer better relief to those who suffer from certain types of headaches.
Researchers studied whether the drug was effective in reducing the frequency of migraine, tension or chronic daily headaches in adults. They found that it was most effective in treating chronic migraines or chronic daily headaches, defined as more than 15 incidences per month.
"Our analyses suggest that botulinum toxin A may be associated with improvement in the frequency of chronic migraine and chronic daily headaches, but not with improvement in the frequency of episodic migraine, chronic tension-type headaches or episodic tension-type headaches," the study's authors wrote in a recent edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association. "However, the association of botulinum toxin A with clinical benefit was small."
Regardless, many doctors may still prescribe the drug to help provide relief to headache sufferers.
"If I was having more than 15 migraines a month, I'd give Botox a try," the study's lead author, Dr. Jeffrey Jackson, told HealthDay News. "It has few side effects. And, if it helps, you can go 90 days without as many headaches and without daily side effects."
Botox, derived from a neurotoxin known as Botulinum Toxin Type A, is most commonly used to reduce the appearance of crow's feet, laugh lines and other wrinkles by temporarily paralyzing the muscles. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Botox was the most commonly performed non-cosmetic surgical procedure in 2011, with more than 2.6 million individuals undergoing it.
It is a popular treatment due to the fact that it provides positive results with few side effects. However, Botox does not provide permanent results and will need to be repeated every three to six months to maintain the results - whether it's being used to treat headaches or wrinkles.
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world’s leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body. ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; active members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and non-surgical aesthetic procedures. International active members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.
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