Why Does Botox Give You a Headache?

Botox-related headaches are an uncommon occurrence, but they can happen. It is thought that they are caused by excessive contraction of certain facial muscles. A headache may also be caused if a blood vessel is injured during the Botox injection and a hematoma (pool of blood) forms. This can cause a headache along with the formation of a tender, bruising lump on the skin.

People may experience a headache after receiving Botox, usually on the day of the injection or the day after. A mild headache may occur after an injection into the forehead muscles. It can last from a few hours to a few days. According to a 2001 study, about 1 percent of patients may experience severe headaches that can last from two weeks to a month before slowly disappearing. But, it is true that Botox can relieve headaches when injected into certain areas. If the pain appears on the same day, it is likely due to the stress of getting the injections.

Delayed headaches, those that appear between seven and 14 days after the injection, usually arise from a fight against the new feeling of numbness. It is important to avoid pain relievers such as Advil, Aspirin, Aleve, and Ibuprofen for at least a week before injections, as they can contribute to bruising. Headaches that occur after treatment with Botox can be controlled. If headaches persist, they tend to decrease as the body metabolizes the drug naturally. If you have a headache after treatment, you can ease the discomfort with over-the-counter pain medication for a few days.

If, after this time, you still feel uncomfortable, contact your Botox provider. What can be done with this problem is that we can administer a lower dose on your next touch-up. The least amount of relaxation can be the trick to keeping headaches at bay. Studies may not be accurate because botulinum toxin A was administered to the forehead and researchers began to recognize that some of the patients in the study had fewer wrinkles on the forehead and assumed that it was those patients who were receiving botox injections. It should be noted that for those who undergo Botox injections for chronic migraine, it may take a couple of days (sometimes up to two weeks) to notice any reduction in frequency and severity of headache. Severe worsening of migraine requiring hospitalization occurred in approximately 1% of patients treated with BOTOX in studies 1 and 2, usually within the first week after treatment. Call your doctor right away if you have trouble breathing or swallowing after a Botox injection.

Derived from Clostridium botulinum, Botox is a neurotoxin that is used medically to treat specific muscle conditions. People with neuromuscular disorders such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) may be at increased risk for certain side effects of Botox. Your doctor will check your urine volume (how much you urinate) within 2 weeks after starting treatment with Botox to check for urinary retention. In 99 pediatric patients who had a negative baseline result for binding of antibodies or neutralizing antibodies and had at least one evaluable value after the start of a randomized double-blind study and a double-blind extension study, no patient developed neutralizing antibodies after receiving 50,200 units by BOTOX. In patients with detrusor hyperactivity associated with neurological conditions with specimens analyzable in the adult drug development program (including the open-label extension study), neutralizing antibodies were developed in 3 of 300 patients (1.0%) after receiving single doses of BOTOX 200 Unit and 5 of 258 patients (1 ,9%) after receiving at least one dose of 300 units. Table 14 presents the most commonly reported adverse reactions in double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials for overactive bladder that occurred within 12 weeks of the first treatment with BOTOX. Table 16 presents the most commonly reported adverse reactions in double-blind, placebo-controlled studies within 12 weeks of injection for patients with detrusor hyperactivity associated with a neurological condition treated with BOTOX 200 Units. The use of anticholinergic drugs after administration of BOTOX may potentiate systemic anticholinergic effects.

Twenty-two adult patients enrolled in double-blind placebo-controlled studies received 400 units or more of BOTOX for the treatment of upper limb spasticity. In these unusual cases, experts suspect that the headache may be due to a faulty technique or a bad batch of Botox that contains some kind of impurity. If you have questions or concerns about how long side effects of Botox can last, talk to your doctor.

Roberto Raniero
Roberto Raniero

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