A migraine headache can send you to bed for hours or days multiple times a month. Unfortunately, more than 39 million people in the United States experience disabling migraines.
Neurologist Andrew Lerman, MD, at Gables Neurology in Miami, Florida, has a personal history of migraines. It’s one of the reasons he uses his medical skill and training to create comprehensive migraine treatment plans for his patients. His goal is to address your pain and prevent migraines from developing in the first place.
Read why and when Dr. Lerman may recommend Botox® injections for your migraines.
How does Botox help with migraines?
When injected into muscles around your head and neck, Botox can block naturally produced chemicals (neurotransmitters) that carry pain signals along nerve pathways in your brain. Cleared by the FDA in 2010 for migraine prevention, Botox is approved for individuals experiencing 15 or more headache days per month with symptoms lasting four hours or longer.
Botox isn’t a stand-alone treatment for migraines. However, it’s an effective preventive when combined with other strategies, such as identifying and avoiding migraine triggers and medications to relieve breakthrough migraine pain.
Dr. Lerman develops personalized treatment plans based on the results of a physical evaluation, a careful review of your migraine history, and your response to other migraine treatments. For example, he may recommend Botox injections if you don’t get adequate headache control with oral preventative medications.
What can I expect during and after Botox injections for migraines?
Dr. Lerman discusses the procedure in detail before scheduling Botox injections. Generally, however, he injects seven sites in your head and neck area during a Botox migraine treatment session, which typically takes less than 15 minutes. Other than a quick pinch at the injection site, the treatments are essentially painless and generally well tolerated by most individuals.
The injections are given every 12 weeks. You may notice decreased headache frequency within four weeks, but Dr. Lerman typically recommends at least two injection sessions before weighing the benefits of Botox.
If you experience significant improvement, Dr. Lerman may schedule several more sessions. It’s essential to continue your injections as scheduled to maintain their preventive benefits. If your headache frequency and intensity decrease after several months, Dr. Lerman may recommend spacing your injections further apart.
How effective are Botox injections for migraines?
Every case is different, but most people undergoing Botox treatment for migraines note a significant decline in headache frequency and intensity. In addition, this treatment is most effective when combined with other therapies, such as dietary changes, improved sleep habits, and medications to relieve breakthrough migraine symptoms.
For top-level neurological care, including effective migraine treatment, schedule an evaluation with Dr. Lerman by calling our Miami, Florida, office today.