Botox for Migraines
BOTOX® (onabotulinumtoxinA) is a prescription medicine that is injected to prevent headaches in adults with chronic migraine who have 15 or more days each month with headache lasting 4 or more hours each day in people 18 years or older.
It is not known whether BOTOX® is safe or effective to prevent headaches in patients with migraine who have 14 or fewer headache days each month (episodic migraine).
What to expect from treatment
Whether you're considering BOTOX® treatment, or have already received treatment, here's what you need to know.
Your first treatment
For Chronic Migraine patients, the FDA has approved a specific dose and injection pattern for BOTOX® treatment—31 injections are given over 7 key areas of the head and neck once every 12 weeks to prevent headache days.
Here's what to expect during your first treatment:
Injections to 7 key areas of the head and neck
Very fine needles are used for 31 total injections
Injections feel like tiny pinpricks—you may feel mild discomfort
The most common side effect in Chronic Migraine clinical studies was neck pain experienced by 9% of BOTOX® patients (vs 3% in placebo)
Other side effects include headache, migraine, slight or partial facial paralysis, eyelid drooping, bronchitis, musculoskeletal stiffness, muscle weakness, pain in 1 or more muscles, ligaments, tendons, or bones, muscle spasms, injection-site pain, and high blood pressure
BOTOX® Injection Sites
*Injections are on both the right and left side of the head.
When to expect results
In clinical trials, BOTOX® provided a significant reduction in headache days after the first treatment. After the second treatment (at 24 weeks), BOTOX® prevented up to 9 headache days a month (vs up to 7 with placebo injection).
Why commit to 2 treatments?
Committing to 2 treatment sessions is important in order to see how BOTOX® is working for you, since BOTOX® showed significant reduction in headache days at 24 weeks. Talk to your doctor about your progress, and as you start to see changes in the amount of headache days you’re having each month, keep track with your headache diary.
What happens next: a 12-week treatment schedule
Based on your progress, you and your doctor will discuss re-treatment every 12 weeks. Remember: BOTOX® is a preventive treatment, which means it's taken to prevent headaches and migraines from occurring. So, it is recommended that treatment be given once every 12 weeks.
The best way for you and your doctor to know if BOTOX® is meeting your treatment needs is to give it time to work, so talk to your doctor, and stay on track.
Ways to stay on track
Want to make sure you stay on schedule? Make your next appointment right after each treatment session—before you leave the office—so you don’t forget.
Feeling your progress is one thing, seeing it on paper is another. As you begin to have fewer headache days, use your headache diary to track your progress, and see how far you’ve come!
For more information on Botox for Migraines (FAQ) FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS