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The Emergence of Botox as A Headache Treatment

Aug 17, 2007
Botulinum toxin A has been around for about three decades, but its many benefits to the health of patients taking it are just starting to surface.

Medical doctors, especially in the United States, started injecting what is more popularly known as botox to patients who suffer from an eye disorder known as strabismus. Strabismus is characterized by an abnormal misaligning of the eyes, leading to crossed eyes.

In 1989, the US Food and Drug Administration approved the use of botox as a treatment for eye muscle disorders like uncontrolled twitching. Thus, the use of botox in the medical profession became wide spread.

But like many other drugs, the potential of botox has expanded beyond its original purpose. In the recent years, the drug has also been discovered to treat the awkward excessive underarm sweating and more importantly, to get rid and prevent wrinkles in the face.

Cosmetic treatment

It is its use as cosmetic treatment that botox's popularity rapidly shot up. From the United States, cosmetic surgeons and practitioners from across the globe started injecting botox to vanity-conscious patients who aim to prevent the onset of ageing in their faces.

Many ageing ladies, and several men as well, prefer to use botox to preventive premature and timely ageing wrinkles. It is because unlike other forms of treatment, botox does not involve the use of scalpels and surgical procedures.

The doctor would just need to inject the drug to several specific areas of the face and the neck for its effect to linger for at most six months. The satisfying result on earlier patients also has helped make the popularity of botox even more evident.

Botox as headache treatment

But did you know that recently, another used of the drug has been discovered accidentally? Yes, aside from helping patients prevent and control ageing wrinkles and eye muscle spasms, botox has been discovered as a potent drug to treat severe headaches.

In the medical profession, headaches were largely dealt by neurologists who specifically focus on the illness' diagnosis and cure. But until recently, plastic surgeons were accidentally linked to a longer-term treatment of headaches or migraines.

Several clinical tests have proven that the patients who were injected with the botox treatment for eye spasms and aesthetic purposes were spared from the onset and occasional attacks of migraines.

Surveys covering botox patients also confirm the notion. Those patients emphasized that after using botox, they have not experienced severe and even mild headaches, for at least six months.

Specific injection points

However, doctors note that to be able to treat headache episodes, botox has to be injected in specific areas of the body. Particularly, studies and reports of patients indicate that botox has to be injected in any of the following areas: the side and the back of the head, the forehead, the eyes and the muscles of the brow.

Other than the specified areas, botox injections are not found to lead to the prevention and cure of headaches. Those who suffer migraines on a daily, weekly and regularized basis are singled out as the primary beneficiaries of the new botox purpose.

It is logical that from the start of this new discovery, botox would further become popular not just for beauty-conscious people, but also for those who have grown tired of consulting to neurologists for the treatment of headaches.

Surpassing neurologists' prescriptions

The traditional headache treatments have almost become obsolete with the emergence of botox as a headache treatment. Thus, neurolgists' patients have expressed relief that they have been given alternative treatments than the conventional drugs for headaches like the sumatriptan, or more commonly known as Imitrex.

Side effects

Almost all medicines and treatments have side effects, and of course, botox is of no exception. However, the side effects linked to botox treatment are limited to inability to move the brow muscles, which to some patients is good because frown lines in the forehead can be alleviated.

Other than that, there is no other side effect linked to botox intake.

Botox has truly become extremely useful in the medical world. It is no wonder that the drug's popularity continuously rises up as years go by. Those who are afraid of needles are now given more reasons not to fear injections anymore.
About the Author
Lee Dobbins writes for http://headache.topicgiant.com where you can learn more about the cause and treatment of all types of headaches as well as more about the botox headache.
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