Injections of botulinum toxin - better known as Botox - may help prevent migraines in people who suffer frequent migraine attacks that are poorly controlled with oral prevention therapies, research hints.
In a study lasting six months, Drs Roger Cady and Curtis Schreiber of the Headache Care Centre in Missouri, US evaluated the efficacy and safety of a single series of Botox injections, versus placebo shots, for preventing migraine.
They report in the journal Headache that Botox had "beneficial, albeit limited, effects on measures of migraine frequency and was not effective in lowering headache pain severity."
However, Botox-treated patients did have fewer headache "episodes" and fewer headache days than placebo-treated patients.
Moreover, Botox had a "measurable" positive impact on quality-of-life.
For example, improvement in the Headache Impact Test - a six-item survey of pain, role functioning, social functioning, fatigue, cognition, and emotional distress - was significantly greater for Botox-treated patients than for placebo-treated patients.
Cady and Schreiber think Botox "may be a useful treatment option" for headache patients who aren't doing well on other migraine preventive agents. - (Reuters Health)
SOURCE: Headache, June 2008.
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