Botox and the more natural alternative available at KOI Wellbeing -Xeomin- are well known for their cosmetic and anti-aging applications but lately these simple neurotoxins have earned new credibility for their more medicinal uses in treating chronic medical conditions.
BoNT- the active ingredient found in Botox and Xeomin for Migraine headaches; Here’s what you need to know:
The Botox and Xeomin-associated neurotoxin (BoNT) is FDA approved for Chronic Migraines and available to patients that experience headaches on 15 or more days a month. “The more frequent the headaches, the better the patient does…,” says Dr. Andrew Blumenfeld, Director, The Headache Center of Southern California. It as been an approved treatment since 2010 and there is a volume of data supporting its efficacy and also any risk factors associated with its use.
How Do Botox and Xeomin Work?
The product is injected around pain fibers that are involved in headaches. It then enters the nerve endings around where it is injected and blocks the release of chemicals involved in pain transmission. This prevents activation of pain networks in the brain.
Botox and Xeomin prevent migraine headaches before they start, but take time to work. “I look to the second and third treatments to maximize effects,” says Dr. Blumenfeld. “Patients see increasing benefit with an increase in the number of treatment cycles.”
One treatment lasts for 10-12 weeks, and patients reported that two treatments reduced the number of headache days by approximately 50%.
Like with all medications, there’s a risk of side effects; the most common for BOTOX® and other BoNT products is neck pain, experienced in 9% of people vs 3% for placebo.
What is Treatment Like?
When you receive your first treatment, expect the appointment to take about 20 minutes. The doctor uses a very small needle that feels like a pinprick.
He or she injects small amounts of product into shallow muscles in the skin. Each treatment typically involves 20 to 40 injections in specific areas of the head and neck.
When you come into KOI for your first appointment with Dr. Lutfy she will assess whether you are a good candidate for this treatment and do the injections at the time of your visit. If you receive treatment there is no cost for your time with the doctor.
It can take up to six months to see the maximum benefit from your BoNT treatment. In the meantime, you can continue your regular medications with no risk of a drug interaction.
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About the doctor
Dr. Patricia Lutfy, MD, DC is an expert at treating spasticity, dystonia, hyperhidrosis and chronic migraine headaches with botulinum toxin products and provides same-day consultation and treatment at our La Jolla KOI Wellbeing offices.
Dr. Lutfy is Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and has treated hundreds of patients using advanced techniques and ultrasound guided injections. A 30 minute consultation with Dr. Lutfy costs $150 and if she determines these therapies are right for you the cost of your consultation is applied to the cost of treatment.
Call today to schedule your appointment 858.257.2808