A recent study suggests that this common procedure could stop migraines dead in their tracks.
Migraines affect millions of people around the world, and in some cases they can be so bad that they render a person unable to get out of bed. According to a report from UPI, new guidelines released by the American Academy of Neurology have offered an unlikely solution to the chronic migraines that plague so many: botox.
You heard that right; the same stuff used to smooth out wrinkles and perk up facial features could actually treat chronic migraines and at least three additional neurological disorders. Botox, or botulinum toxin is actually produced by a strain of bacteria. The toxin produced by these bacteria blocks the release of certain chemicals at nerve endings, which limits muscle contraction and reduces the receptivity to pain signals.
The new guidelines affirm that botox treatment for chronic migraines and other neurological disorders is “generally safe.” Other disorders that could be treated by botox include spasticity in adults, cervical dystonia and blepharospasm.
People suffering from chronic migraines experience the debilitating headaches at least 15 days out of the month. Spasticity in adults is defined by muscle tightness that restricts movement and is commonly seen after a person suffers a stroke. Cervical dystonia affects the brain’s ability to control the muscles in the neck, and can sometime lead to an involuntary head tilt or a neck twitch. Finally, Blepharospaasm results in an uncontrollable twitching of the eyes. The authors of the new guidelines claim that botox is an effective treatment for each of these disorders.
The guidelines were prepared by Dr. David Simpson from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York. The guidelines were updated for the first time since 2008, and this marks the first time doctors have recommended botox treatment for chronic migraines.