How Many Times to Try Botox for Migraine Prevention?

Health Professional
Thinkstock

Question:

Hello, Dr. Watson and Teri. I have what I hope is a quick and simple question to answer. How many times is it advisable to try Botox for migraine prevention? I don't want to sell it short, but even with insurance coverage, it's an expensive treatment, and some of the injections go beyond uncomfortable to painful. I'm usually not a big baby about needles, but the injections in the eyebrow and forehead area really do hurt. I saw no results from the first treatment, but I've heard that Botox should be tried more than once to give it a fair shot (pun intended). Thank your time and expertise, Jenelle.

Answer:

Dear Jenelle;

The migraine preventive effects of Botox tend to be cumulative with patients getting more benefit from each subsequent treatment until it reaches maximum effectiveness. It's not all that uncommon to get little or no noticeable results from the first Botox treatment, but to have success with the second or even third round. If, after three rounds of Botox, there are still no results, it's then reasonable to come to the conclusion that Botox isn't going to work for that patient.

We don't consider you a "big baby" for saying some of the injections hurt. They can hurt. That's a simple fact. For a method that may reduce that pain for you, check out Botox for Migraine - A Suggestion for Easing Injection Site Pain.

Thank you for your question,
Dave Watson and Teri Robert

Thinkstock

About Ask the Clinician:

Thinkstock

Questions submitted to our Ask the Clinician column are answered by Dr. David Watson and Teri Robert.

If you have a question, please click** HERE. Accepted questions will be answered by publishing the answers in our column. Due to the number of questions submitted, no questions will be answered privately, and questions will be accepted only when submitted via THIS FORM**. Please do not submit questions via email, private message, or blog comments. Thank you.

**_Please note: We cannot diagnose, suggest specific treatment, or handle emergencies via the Internet. Please do not ask us to diagnose; see your physician for diagnosis._** For an overview of how we can help and questions we can and can't answer, please see _**[Seeking Migraine and Headache Diagnoses and Medical Advice](http://www.healthcentral.com/migraine/c/9924/162100/migraine-headache-diagnosing)** _.

We hope you find this general medical and health information useful, but this Q & A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. For all personal medical and health matters, including decisions about diagnoses, medications and other treatment options, you should always consult your doctor. See full Disclaimer.