Weird Medicine

Botox For Chronic Migraine: Does It Work?

Thanks to modern medicine and new discoveries, the treatments of yesterday are now proving to be more and more effective, even going as far as to widen their uses. For example, a newly identified protein is now being researched at due to its apparent effectiveness in helping treat the common cold, while experimental treatments previously thought to be useless are now being used to help treat different types of cancer.

Another such example is Botox, which is a brand of botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT). Originally derived from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, this protein substance was the toxin that’s responsible for botulism in its original form.  Botulism is the condition that causes paralysis once you eat food contaminated with it, which can even lead to respiratory failure and death.

However, thanks to modern science, it has steadily gained reputation as the go-to for middle-aged and elderly people to reduce fine lines and wrinkles on their skin. The medicine does this by paralyzing the underlying muscles that work beneath. Nowadays however, it has proven itself to be more useful than a simple non-surgical anti-aging treatment since it’s also being used to treat muscular disorders, some bladder and bowel disorders, excessive sweating and of course, chronic migraines.

Chronic Headaches

Defined as headaches that occur for around 15 days a month for around three months, Botox was first introduced as a treatment to it back in the year 2000. However, it wasn’t until two important studies made in 2010 where Botox finally got approved by the FDA as treatment for said condition.

Per studies, Botox supposedly stops chronic migraine by interrupting pain production in the nerves via the blocking of pain-producing chemicals such as substance P and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). At the moment, it is not yet proven if this is the process that works since it’s only known to help reduce the severity and pain frequency of the migraine.

Despite this, Botox injections in the U.S. that’s aimed to treat headaches are very much commonplace and are usually beneficial and well-tolerated. It also appears to be safe when used as long-term treatment for chronic migraines.

Migraine Migraines or recurrent headaches can cause severe pain, sensitivity to light and nausea. Hermes Rivera/Unsplash