Surgical Management of Migraine Headache

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Abstract

Migraine surgery has been recently reported as an alternative to medical management to provide long-term relief in migraine sufferers. A prospective study was designed wherein patients diagnosed with migraine were screened for surgery by injecting botulinum toxin type A at the primary trigger site. Surgery consisted of corrugator supercilii muscle resection to decompress supra-trochlear and supra-orbital nerves with avulsion of zygomaticotemporal branch of trigeminal nerve. Using pre and postsurgery questionnaires, information regarding the degree of reduction of migraines with regard to severity and frequency; and surgical site problems was acquired. Thirty patients volunteered for migraine surgery. Mean migraine headaches reduced from 15.2 ± 6.3 episodes per month to 1.9 ± 2.4 episodes per month (P < 0.0001) postsurgery. The mean intensity of migraine headache also reduced from a preoperative 7.3 ± 3.5 to a postoperative of 1.3 ± 1.4 (P < 0.0001). Fourteen (46.7%) patients reported complete elimination of migraine after surgery while an equal number reported significant relief of symptoms. Two (6.6%) patients failed to notice any significant improvement after surgery. The mean follow-up period was 11.1 ± 2 months with no major surgical complications. Results of the authors’ study confirm prior published results that surgical treatment of migraine is a reality. Surgeons can easily incorporate this simple surgical procedure in their armamentarium to offer relief to numerous migraine patients.

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