You may have injections in your forehead, temples, and back of your head and neck. Sometimes, the specialist will inject areas called “trigger points” where the headache originates. You will have several injections of Botox around your head and neck once every 12 weeks to mitigate or prevent migraines. Botox is injected around the pain fibers that participate in headaches.
Botox enters the nerve endings around where it is injected and blocks the release of chemicals that are involved in pain transmission. This prevents the activation of pain networks in the brain. Botox is only available on the NHS for people with chronic migraine who have tried at least three other preventive treatments. It is currently only available through a specialist, such as a headache specialist or a consulting neurologist.
For the above-mentioned use, the recommended dose of Botox is 155 total units divided into 31 injections. These injections will be given in seven specific muscle areas of the head and neck. Each muscle area has several sites where 0.1 milliliters (ml) of Botox will be injected. In terms of units, 0.1 ml is approximately 5 units.
The injections can take about 15 minutes and most injections feel like a small pinch. A short needle is used and all injections are superficial, not deep injections. Expect the injections around the forehead and eyebrows to be a little more uncomfortable than the rest. The specialist will evaluate your history and symptoms to make sure that Botox is an appropriate treatment option for you.
Botox injections are usually given every 12 weeks to prevent headaches in adults with chronic migraine headaches. Using Botox to prevent headaches in adults with chronic migraine may cause mild or severe side effects. If Botox doesn't work for you or stops working, the specialist will discuss other treatment options with you. The following lists include some of the main side effects that may occur when using Botox for this purpose.
If you experience any of the above symptoms after receiving a Botox injection, you should talk to your doctor. Laura Banks, a neurologist at the Natividad Medical Center, suggests asking potential doctors where they learned to administer Botox and how many times they have given it. When Botox is injected, the release of acetylcholine is blocked, which prevents muscle contraction. Keep in mind that before your insurance company approves Botox as a treatment for chronic migraine, you generally must have tried and failed to respond to two other preventive treatments.
The exact relationship between these events and botulinum toxin injection has not been established. Botox has not been shown to work for the treatment of migraines that occur 14 days or less a month or for other forms of headache. Here are some frequently asked questions about the use of Botox to prevent headaches in adults with chronic migraine. Placebo showed a reduction of 6.4-6.9 days of headache per month compared to treatment with Botox, which showed 7.8-9.2 fewer days of headache per month.
Botox injections to prevent headaches in adults with chronic migraine are generally safe, but may cause some mild side effects. In some cases, people who receive Botox injections to prevent headaches experience improvements in their condition within 2 to 4 weeks.