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Botox, surgery effective migraine therapy

  |   March 17, 2012 at 12:29 AM
DALLAS, March 17 (UPI) -- If conventional therapies for migraine headaches don't work, a U.S. plastic surgeon said surgical options can be effective and lasting.

Dr. Jeffrey Janis, a plastic surgeon at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, helped develop a technique that uses Botox -- typically used for cosmetic purposes -- to help identify potential peripheral nerve trigger points that may contribute to migraine pain.

Janis was involved in developing surgical techniques based on anatomical studies to decompress the nerves to provide more long-lasting relief.

In a recent study, Janis corroborated the effectiveness of using Botox and surgery to treat migraine headaches. The study found the use of Botox led to average improvement of 85.5 percent over original symptoms such as frequency, severity and duration -- but surgery produced a 96.6 percent average improvement over original symptoms.

A separate five-year review verified the surgical treatments for migraines had lasting effects, Janis said.

"This type of surgery is not for everyone, but for those who have not found relief, these procedures are proving effective," Janis said in a statement.

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