Botox relieves myofascial (muscle) pain

Botox seems to help neck and upper back muscle pains, according to a recent study by UCLA doctors. We know that one of the actions of Botox is to relax muscles and it has been effective for the treatment of sciatic pain, according to a previous blinded study. Drs. Nicol and Ferrante at UCLA gave a single injection of Botox to 118 patients with neck and upper back pain. Six weeks later 54% of patients showed improvement. Then, 8 weeks later, half of the 54 responders were given again Botox and the other half placebo (saline injection). Those who received Botox did much better not only on pain scores, but also on quality of life measures. They also had a significant improvement in the number of headaches. This is not that surprising, since many of our patients report that their headaches begin with muscle spasm in the neck or upper back. It is very likely that giving more than one injection will lead to a greater improvement in a larger percentage of patients. In chronic migraine headache patients injecting Botox into 31 sites has been proven to be very effective.

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