Innovations In Headache Treatment By Experts
Although migraine is a condition that people have known about for centuries, migraine sufferers have had few options for most of that time. In the last decade, options in new treatment for migraine headaches have progressed by leaps and bounds. If you have had the same migraine treatment for years, or if you are new to the condition, you might be surprised by recent changes to the field.
New Headache Treatment Designed Specifically for Migraine
The latest migraine treatment features a new classification of medications that can help prevent migraines. Three were approved in 2018, all of which target a protein called calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). This protein is responsible for pain signals through nerves in the brain.
Experts believe that this protein may be a primary actor for people who get migraines. The medications Aimovig (erenumab), Ajovy (fremanezumab) and Emgality (galcanezumab) target the protein or its receptors in the body. They are available by injection at a specific frequency, depending on the type. These are the first medications available that are uniquely designed to target migraines. Other preventives people take were usually created for another purpose, such as treating depression or high blood pressure.
BOTOX® for Migraines
Although BOTOX® is best-known for its role in cosmetic treatments, there are many conditions that can be managed or improved by these injections. In 2010, the Food and Drug Administration approved BOTOX® to treat chronic migraines. This treatment involves the injection of a particular toxin that relaxes the muscles around it.
Botulinum toxin affects the nerve endings near the injection site, as well. Most people who have BOTOX® for migraines get a number of injections around their head and neck. Although each series is rated to last for about three months, some people say it takes more than one course to notice significant relief.
Topical Anesthetics to Treat Migraines
Since every person’s headache profile is unique, experts look for multiple ways to address the way pain presents in different people. Nerves are generally responsible for carrying pain signals in migraine sufferers. As such, nerve blocks can provide temporary pain relief and may also be able to prevent future migraines.
Researchers are developing ways to perform nerve blocks through methods that are less invasive. For example, the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG) is a collection of nerves located in the nasal cavity. It is tied to the trigeminal nerve, which is responsible for migraines in most people. Recent innovations allow a migraine expert to use a thin tube through the nasal passageway to deliver an SPG nerve block. The procedure takes little time and can be easier to perform than other treatments.
Why You Need a Headache Expert
Unlike many short-term conditions, migraines may take several separate attempts to treat before finding one that works for you. The rapid improvements to the field mean that people who do not specialize in treatment for headaches may not have the latest information.
Migraine experts know how debilitating the condition can be for millions of people. If you have been struggling to identify an effective treatment, or you are still in the process of finding a diagnosis for your headaches, you need a professional who understands which options may be best for you.
Finding the most appropriate treatment for migraines is a process that you may need to repeat a few times throughout your experience with the condition. Innovations in headache treatments mean that you now have many more options than in the past. To learn more about our services or to schedule an appointment, contact Diamond Headache Clinic today.