What is Botox?
Botox is an effective injection treatment for a variety of conditions which include chronic migraines, cervical dystonia, ocular dysfunction, urological issues such as overactive bladder and other conditions as well. It has also been used cosmetically for treatment of wrinkles.
What is chronic migraine and cervical dystonia?
Chronic migraine is a condition that is characterized by pain affecting one side of the head with characteristics of a pulsation or throbbing sensation. It is associated with moderate severe pain. They can be aggravated by physical activity as well by one’s menstrual cycle. Nausea, vomiting, and photosensitivity can also be associated with this condition. Indications for Botox treatment of chronic migraines include 15 or more headache days a month lasting approximately 4 hours or more each day in individuals over 18 years of age.
Cervical dystonia is also known as spasmodic torticollis. This condition is associated with involuntary neck muscle contraction with the head being twisted to one side or the other. It is typically associated with pain as well as headaches. The condition can arise spontaneously or may be associated with chronic injuries such as to the neck or shoulder. Cervical dystonia is also associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. This condition is not curable; however, can be treated with botulinum toxin. Medications for this condition are typically ineffective.
How often do I need to get treated?
Treatment for chronic migraines and cervical dystonia are given every 3 months. For cervical dystonia, we typically send patient’s to physical therapy after injections to maximize the benefit.
What are the side effects of Botox?
Most individuals do not have side effects. However, in those individuals that do have side effects the following can be seen: trouble swallowing, speaking, or breathing, blurred vision, flulike symptoms, dizziness, and blurred vision.
What can I expect?
After treatment for migraines, one should not touch their face, go to sleep, get a massage, or work out for approximately 4 hours. Doing so may lead to spread of the toxin which, in turn, may cause facial weakness. There may be soreness from the injection site. You can take Tylenol or motrin and apply warm compresses. The effect of treatment is usually seen within 1-2 weeks of the injection.