The use of onabotulinum toxin A (Botox®) in the treatment of chronic migraine at the Parma Headache Centre: a prospective observational study
Chronic migraine is a debilitating headache, whose treatment is often complicated by the concomitant overuse of symptomatic medication and by the poor efficacy of standard prophylactic treatments. The PREEMPT studies have demonstrated the efficacy and tolerability of onabotulinum toxin A (Botox®) in the treatment of this headache type. Data about its use in clinical practice are still scarce. Our study evaluated all subjects with chronic migraine who were treated with onabotulinum toxin A between February 2014 and November 2015 at the Parma Headache Centre. Botox was injected according to the PREEMPT paradigm every 3 months. The data about variations in the number of headache days and in symptomatic medication intake before and after the Botox injections were collected from the patients’ headache diaries. The study also evaluated tolerability to treatment, disability, and depressive symptoms. Of the 52 treated subjects, 14 received Botox treatment for at least 9 months and showed a significant decrease in the median number of headache days (from 19 to 14.5, p = 0.011) and in the median number of days of symptomatic medications intake and symptomatic drugs. Overall, the treatment was well tolerated. The average MIDAS and BDI-II scores after 9 months were reduced, though not significantly. The treatment with Botox proved effective and well tolerated in our clinical practice. Further studies on larger patient samples will help shed light on the persistence of the drug’s effect at long term and identify the predictive factors of response to treatment.
KeywordsChronic migraine (CM) Medication overuse headache (MOH) Onabotulinum toxin A (Botox) Clinical efficacy
Thanks to Paolo Casimiro, MD, for his help with data collection.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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