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Botox for Migraines

Woman working on laptop having a headache

Could I Have Chronic Migraine?

BOTOX is the only FDA-approved, preventive treatment for the prophylaxis of headaches in adult patients with chronic migraine (>15 days per month with headache lasting 4 hours a day or longer). Patients with chronic migraine are significantly more likely to be severely disabled than those with episodic migraine.

Chronic Migraine is more than just frequent migraines. A migraine is a type of headache that may begin as a dull ache and then turn into a constant, throbbing pain, often felt on one side of the head. When you have a migraine, you may be sensitive to light and sound and experience nausea and/or vomiting.

A migraine headache can last between 4 to 72 hours and may get worse by or cause you to avoid routine physical activities, such as walking, or climbing stairs.

Chronic Migraine is a neurological condition that causes people with migraine to have:

  • 15 or more headache days a month
  • Each headache lasting 4 hours or more
  • At least 8 headache days a month associated with migraine

Think you have Chronic Migraine?

If at least half of your month is made up of headache days, then you may be living with Chronic Migraine.
BOTOX is the first and only preventive treatment approved by the FDA for adults with Chronic Migraine (15 or more headache days a month, each lasting 4 hours or more). BOTOX is not approved for adults with migraine who have 14 or fewer days a month.

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)

When to expect results

In clinical trials, Botox provided a significant reduction in headache days after the first treatment. After the second treatment (at 24weeks), 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 our Headache Diary.
What happens next: a 12-week treatment schedule
Based on your progress, you and your doctor will discuss re-treatment needs is to give it time to work, so talk to your doctor, and stay on track.

Botox – the cosmetic formulation frequently used to help smooth lines and wrinkles – is effective in the treatment of chronic migraine headaches. Millions of Americans suffer from migraine headaches, many of which are debilitating. As an alternative to pain medications, which provide only temporary relief, Botox that is given at regular intervals, a few times a year, can reduce the frequency and intensity of future headaches over time.

Did you know?

Pain relieving medications have long been the standard of managing chronic headaches and migraines. But did you know that Botox has been approved for the prevention of chronic migraines by the Food and Drug Administration? The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence conducted controlled trials to test the efficacy of Botox for migraine headaches in comparison to placebos. In each trial, Botox significantly out-performed the placebo, producing a noticeable reduction in headache frequency.

Frequently Asked Questions

I have chronic migraines. Am I a candidate for Botox treatment?

Botox is generally not the first line of treatment for migraine headaches. Instead, it is reserved for patients who have been unresponsive to headache medications. You may be a candidate for Botox for migraines if you have headaches on at least 15 days each month, with more than half of them being migraines. The only way to know for sure if Botox could help alleviate your headaches is by scheduling a consultation with your doctor.

What should I expect during a migraine Botox treatment?

Your Botox treatments will be administered in your doctor’s office. Most sessions take only 5 to 10 minutes, during which time a fine needle is used to inject small amounts of Botox into 7 key areas of the head. There is a total of 31 injections, which may induce mild discomfort. You’ll be allowed to return home the same day and resume normal activities soon after.

What types of results can I expect after getting Botox for my headaches?

Botox can provide significant pain relief for chronic headaches, but results vary from person to person. Keep in mind that it may take several weeks and more than one treatment before your headaches begin responding to Botox injections. Botox is not effective for the treatment of existing headaches.

Contact Information

We will always take the time to answer any questions that you may have about our procedures.


11665 Avena Place, Suite 104
San Diego, CA 92128

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