The usage of Botox® (botulinum toxin) is not limited to cosmetic therapies. There are numerous research studies showing the effectiveness of botulinum toxin in managing painful conditions. Low back pain, headaches and neck pain are just a few of the painful conditions that can benefit from botulinum toxin injections.
WHAT PATIENTS ARE CANDIDATES FOR BOTULINUM TOXIN INJECTIONS?
Patients with back pain, headaches, neck pain and limb pain can benefit from botulinum toxin injections.
HOW IS THE PROCEDURE PERFORMED?
You may be given conscious sedation through an IV (intravenous needle) inserted in your arm/hand on your admission to the facility where the procedure will be performed. You will be escorted to the surgical suite with the nurse and asked to lay on your stomach for the procedure . The MD and /or nurse will monitor your blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory rate (breathing) during the procedure. Although most of the time the procedure is relatively painless since the size of the needle is very small. The physician may perform the procedure with a special x-ray machine called a fluoroscope to accurately visualize the anatomy. However, for the neck, head and face, we generally do not need x-rays to localize these small muscles. Finally, local anesthetics with botulinum toxin will be injected to disrupt the pain fibers and relax the muscle spasms.
WILL THE PROCEDURE BE PAINFUL?
Typically the injections are not painful, since the needles are very small.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS AND SIDE EFFECTS FROM BOTULINUM TOXIN INJECTIONS?
The most common side effect is local pain from the needles. More serious but extremely rare risks are bleeding, infection, nerve injury, paralysis and weakness in the lower extremities.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE PROCEDURE TO WORK?
The beneficial effects are usually appreciated 2-4 weeks after the procedure.