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Archives of Dermatology

Year: 2010  |  Volume: 146  |  Issue: 2  |  Page No.: 159 - 163

Predicting Migraine Responsiveness to Botulinum Toxin Type A Injections

C. C Kim, M. M Bogart, S. A Wee, R Burstein, K. A Arndt and J. S. Dover


Background  Botulinum toxin type A (BTX) is used prophylactically to reduce the frequency of migraine headaches, with inconsistent responses reported in the literature. The purpose of our study was to determine whether BTX injections at doses used for upper-face cosmetic purposes, which differ from doses typically used by headache specialists, could prevent imploding and ocular but not exploding migraines.

Observations  Study participants were recruited among patients who had received or were planning to receive BTX injections for upper-face cosmetic purposes but also reported having migraines. Among the 18 patients who completed the study, most with imploding and ocular migraines experienced a significant reduction in their headache frequency, whereas those with exploding migraines generally did not.

Conclusions  Our study supports the hypothesis that patients with imploding and ocular migraines are more responsive to BTX than those with exploding migraines. Injections of BTX at doses appropriate for cosmetic purposes may be sufficient to prevent migraine attacks.

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