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How effective are injected medications for treating headaches?

Dawn Marcus
Neurology
Injecting medications into muscles and nerves around the head and neck can sometimes help reduce headaches. The most effective injections are those that combine a numbing medicine (such as lidocaine or bupivacaine) and a steroid. The numbing medicine temporarily blocks the pain, and the steroid reduces inflammation to help prevent the pain from coming back. The occipital nerves leave the neck at the back of the head and then travel over the sides and top of the head. Injections or nerve blocks of these nerves may temporarily help to break a bad headache cycle. The effect of these injections generally lasts days to weeks. You'll get more long-lasting effects if you start neck exercises, relaxation techniques, or other therapies after your headaches have been temporarily reduced by injections.
The Woman's Migraine Toolkit: Managing Your Headaches from Puberty to Menopause (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

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The Woman's Migraine Toolkit: Managing Your Headaches from Puberty to Menopause (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

Migraines are a common, controllable type of headache that affects one in every six women, more than 20 million in the United States alone. The Woman’s Migraine Toolkit helps readers take charge of...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.