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Non-endoscopic migraine surgery provides significant symptom relief
Date:7/28/2014

ave focused on developing ways to access migraine trigger points specific sites of nerve compression that differ from patient to patient through open incisions used in several cosmetic procedures.

Patients included in the current study all had chronic migraines that had been confirmed by a full neurological exam and had not responded to standard medical therapies. Previous symptom relief from treatment with Botox or nerve blocks, which would support a role for nerve compression, was required for inclusion in the study. Trigger points were identified based on patients' symptoms and histories, including response to previous procedures; and surgery was performed to free those sites from compressing muscles, connective tissue, blood vessels or bony structures.

The study analyzed a total of 43 procedures performed on 35 patients. Of those procedures, 90.1 percent resulted in symptom resolution defined as a greater than 50 percent improvement in the frequency, duration and severity of migraine pain. Complete elimination of migraine symptoms was produced by 51.3 percent of successful procedures; 28.2 percent resulted in a greater than 80 percent improvement, and 20.5 percent produced a 50 to 80 percent improvement.

Austen stresses that selecting the appropriate patients for this procedure including preliminary evaluations by a neurologist specializing in migraines is essential. "We're still at the early stages of developing this concept and are now conducting a prospective study to find better ways of evaluating which patients we can help. We need to develop more evidence that this approach will be successful in the hands of surgeons at many different centers. No one is claiming that this is a cure for migraines, but the results of our study and others clearly indicate that this procedure can make a big difference in the lives of the right patients."


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Contact: Cassandra Aviles
cmaviles@partners.org
617-724-6433
Massachusetts General Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

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