Is Botox helpful?

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Is Botox helpful?

Post  Mini on Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:06 am

Is it, or is it not? The opinions seems to vary on the subject if Botox is helpful for migraine suferrers.

Here comes this latest research: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-12394458
and we are discouraged again.

However, we are still able to get it on NHS, if your doctor recommends it.
I have not tried it myself, as my migraine is reasonably under control, but I am glad that there is still this option left for me, in case I need it.

I am not sure what to make of this new development.
I think we all respond differently, so I am all for having as many options as possible.
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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  stephgood on Thu Feb 10, 2011 2:26 pm

Well, really I don't care what the info says about it. It seems to be helping me. I am sure that is not going to be the case for everyone. It was a last ditch effort when I started getting it, and I plan on continuing with it as long as possible. I do not want to go back to before botox. It is not a cure for me, but I feel much better than I did. Not enough to work full time, not enough to do things like i did pre-migraines, but I am able to enjoy more of my life by far. I tried damn near everything else there was. I tried to get the botox for years, but was unable to afford it. I can't exactly tell you what it does for me, but daily migraines on a level of 9-10 are now about a 3. I still get bad, but it doesn't seem to be as bad, and it doesn't seem to last as long. I still have pain meds to take, but take A LOT less than I used to. So...I guess that is all I have on it! If you try it and it works great! If not I guess you have then ruled it out. It started working for me on the first set of injections. I also have a great DR who knows just where to put it, maybe that helps too. We went differently the last time, the FDA has their own set of 'standard' injections, so we tried that and added in the jaw as well. We are testing to see if the FDA standards make an impact positively, or negatively, in the way I feel, compared to the routine before. So far it is hard for me to determine. The weather here has been awful and I can't count on this being a good test. I plan on having the same set done again in March to see if there are any changes in those 3 months.
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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  Mini on Thu Feb 10, 2011 2:42 pm

It is always very uplifting thing to hear that some treatment works.
We all know that we respond differently to medicines, or treatments such as MOH, botox or occipital injection.
This is why it is important that we are offered the greatest variety of treatment options.

I think that you have said something that is often overlooked:
I also have a great DR who knows just where to put it,
Too many docotrs who give botox (or steroid injection) are not very good at it, they do not have enough practice, but knowing exactly where to inject is not easy, it takes great skill to find teh right place.
I think doctors try, because patients ask for it, but they do not know enough to make it work in case of migraine.

I am so gald that you are getting such great results, Stephgood, if it works for you keep having it done.
Here in UK, we do not pay for the treatement, but we need a GPs who who will refer us to specialist and now I am concerned that this aricle, (and rareasrch) is going to make things more difficult for migraneurs.
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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  tortoisegirl on Sun Feb 13, 2011 5:46 pm

It seems like the study results really vary...but I can understand why. They all have different ways of measuring success, different doctors injecting, injection locations and number of locations, and the biggest variable I think, the patient (ie. the type of headache condition & frequency & all the results depend on their reporting of their pain). I take it as a sign that the FDA approved it for chronic migraine (> 15 days a month, other treatments don't help, etc), that it has its place among other treatments. There was one study I read quoting 80% got some kind of relief (http://headaches.about.com/cs/prevention/a/ahs03_botox.htm).

Given that it has more chance of helping than anything else I've tried and failed, and that it is now approved by my insurance for migraine and I'll have very little out of pocket cost, I'm going to try to go for it (I don't have migraine, but a similar headache condition that is 24/7). Hoping my doctor is willing to fudge the form a bit on the migraine vs. New Daily Persistent Headache thing, which seems common. The link you gave of 1/10 having a worsened conditions scares me though! The studies I read seem to say only 1-2% had side effects (and even those were mostly minor), and didn't mention anyone getting worse. I'd still hope to believe that the risks are no less than some other meds, besides of course that is stays in your system three months. Thanks for the info and best wishes.

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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  lrobb98 on Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:33 am

Studies vary, but almost every doctor I know of, who has given Botox quite a bit, believes it works well for 55 to 65% of people with chronic migraine..the problem in studies is overcoming the high placebo rate, always a problem in pain studies. However, hundreds of thousands of migraine sufferers recieve Botox, have 2 to 3 pretty good months, then headaches increase again; they know it is not placebo.

Larry Robbins,M.D. http://www.headachedrugs.com

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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  Billy Ray on Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:59 pm

I have done it 2 times. Nothing the first but could tell it helped some the 2nd. It helped calm the pain down but when I had a cluster the pain went right through it. Still I would do it again. Plan to do it in a month or so for a 3rd time. Got to try something.
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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  Mini on Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:33 am

Thank you for your feedback Tortoisegirl - I agree that we need to treat any such treatment as just one of the options to try. in case we do get positive outcome.
AS we can see from Dr Robin's response there is a good chance that it might work.

Perhaps not every time, like in case of Billy Ray, but it is still worth trying. WE know that there are no universal remedies for migraine, so we are grateful when there are new treatemnts to try. So, I am glad that botox is still available for anyone who might wish to use that treatement.
Thank you all for your comments.
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Want to try

Post  teppy000 on Wed Mar 09, 2011 10:06 am

I just wish I could try Botox. Both my doctor and the 2nd opinion I got suggested I do. However there is no where around that will give me the injections. confused I have tried all my other less evasive options. I would really like to at least have the option to try!

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Blue Cross Still Says Investigational Even Tho FDA Approved

Post  Sandetoze on Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:41 pm

As a chronic migraine sufferer I held out the "light at the end of the tunnel" feeling when I saw Botox was approved for chronic migraine. I used many years ago when I had an insurance plan that covered Botox. After changing jobs and having Blue Cross as my provider, I had to stop Botox and went back to the never ending pain cycle. My neuro recently submitted me for approval since the FDA says ok. But....Blue Cross obviously feels they are above the FDA and still consider it investigational . Even tho they cover Botox for EVERY other FDA approved condition. I am so disgusted that when I feel better, am about ready to fight them, contact the Insurance Boards, member of Congress and President Obama too! This injustice has to stop.

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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  tortoisegirl on Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:52 pm

They shouldn't be allowed to call it investigational when approved by the FDA...either their documentation hasn't gone through yet (there is a bit of time before the FDA approves something and the insurance approves it and you can get it), the pre-auth was submitted after the FDA approved it but before your insurance changed their documentation, or your doctor put a condition other than what is approved (chronic migraines of 15 days a month or more which are refractory to other treatments)...if none of those are true, there is a really good case for someone to sue them! Wow.

The doctor I see for Botox consults is going to put my paperwork through for migraine (even though I have New Daily Persistent Headache), and he thinks we have a good chance since my insurance approves it. Yay. Smile

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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  amy on Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:32 am

i got blue cross to approve my botox. they first turned me down, even after FDA approval so I complained to my state insurance commissioner and that got them going. my appt is next week and i hope it works!
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Re: Is Botox helpful?

Post  somebodyhealme on Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:25 pm

I've interacted with enough people who have had good results to believe those newer studies that call the treatment into question. Personally I had two rounds and saw very little improvement, but my migraines haven't responded to any preventive meds. If you can try it, I would.
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