Botox for Migraine
Over the past few years, there has been increased interest in using Botox for migraine relief. Some people feel it has been an almost miraculous solution for them.
Important background on Botox
Botulinum toxin A (Botox) has become famous for its other application – getting rid of wrinkles. The treatment was discovered in Canada in 1987 by Jean and Alastair Carruthers, and since then brand names Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin have been used (in very small doses) to decrease wrinkles and frown lines.
But the next discovery was that patients with migraine found their attacks to be decreasing when they had Botox treatment. Why was this happening? Was it just a coincidence?
Since then, research has begun to try to understand why it works, and when it works, and how Botox for migraine relief might best be used.
How does it work?
In your body, a chemical (neurotransmitter) known as acetylcholine sends signals for muscles to contract. Botox as a toxin binds the nerve endings, blocking the release of the chemical. Essentially, your muscles don’t get the message to contract, and so they relax. In a proper treatment, the muscles won’t contract, but will still have enough strength for normal use.
Several recent studies determined that besides relaxing muscles, Botox also stops the release of several neurotransmitters from the nerve endings. These neurotransmitters are released by messages sent from the brain centers that trigger a migraine attack. In turn the released neurotransmitters send pain messages back to the brain completing a vicious self-sustaining cycle. Contact Dr. Sawhney to see how Botox can help you today!