Cosmetic shots could ease migraine symptoms

February 16th, 2010 - 3:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Feb 16 (IANS) Botulinum shots used for cosmetics are also likely to reduce the frequency of migraine headaches described as crushing, vicelike or eye-popping.
Migraine headaches affect approximately 28 million Americans, known to cause pain that is often debilitating. Researchers conducting clinical trials on botulinum toxin type A to treat facial lines recognised a correlation between the shots and the alleviation of migraine symptoms.

“The initial promise of a new prophylactic (preventive) therapy for migraines was met by the challenge of replication of these results,” as subsequent studies have failed to demonstrate botulinum was more effective than placebo, the authors write.

Christine C. Kim, then of SkinCare Physicians, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, and now a private practitioner in Encino, California, and colleagues studied patients (average age 50.9 years) who had already received or were planning to receive botulinum injections for cosmetic purposes but also reported having migraines.

Of those, more than half reported imploding headaches, described by adjectives like crushing and vice-like, or ocular headaches, reported to feel like an eye is popping out or that someone is pushing a finger into an eye.

Other patients had exploding headaches, described as feeling like one’s head is going to explode or split, or that pressure is building up. Some patients had more than one type.

Three months after treatment, more than two thirds of the patients had responded to the treatment with a reduction in migraine pain, including those who had imploding or ocular headaches and those who had exploding headaches.

A third of the patients who did not respond had exploding headaches, said a JAMA release.

These findings were published in the February issue of Archives of Dermatology.

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