Botox Injection Treatments For Piriformis Syndrome

Botox Injection Treatments For Piriformis Syndrome


Piriformis syndrome is a painful condition that occurs when the sciatic nerve is trapped or impeded by the piriformis muscle or tendon (a separate article detailing this condition and possible treatment options is available on this site).


Although a range of treatment options are available, this article focuses on the relatively new treatment options that can be offered by botox injections and their use and application in treating piriformis syndrome.


Botulism Injection Therapy


The terms botox injection treatments and botulism injection therapy both refer to the same treatment, namely the injecting of botox into the piriformis muscle. This has the effect of paralysing the muscle, thereby ensuring that a patient’s pain is significantly reduced.


Temporary Relief


Botox injections do not provide a permanent solution to the problem of piriformis syndrome, they simply help to alleviate the persistent pain, thereby enabling the patient to resume more day to day activities and also ensure that the patient can exercise again.


Usually relief can be obtained for several months, but the injections may have to be repeated.


Patients also need to be aware that a botox injection will not cure the problem, it simply alleviates the pain that is being experienced.


Botox and Physiotherapy


When the piriformis muscle is paralysed, the patient should be able to start on some kind of stretching programme, to ensure that the piriformis muscle and tendon are loosened, thereby reducing the pain that is caused by the sciatic nerve being pinched or trapped.


Patients who have botox injections and combine it with physiotherapy are much more likely to make a better recovery than those who simply have the injections. However, the fact that stretching is undertaken whilst the effect of the botox is still active, can substantially reduce the need for further botox injections after the initial first or second injections. Thus botox injections should not be seen in isolation: they need to be viewed as being a means whereby physiotherapy and stretching can be resumed.


Botox As Secondary Treatment Option


Botox is increasingly being used to treat piriformis syndrome and it is relatively safe to do so. However, it is not the primary treatment option that will be chosen, since many people can respond well to physiotherapy or basic stretching exercises alone, or combined with anti-inflammatory medications, analgesics and steroids.


Where the syndrome does not respond well to these treatments, then either electrical stimulation of the nerves or botox may be used to elicit a favourable outcome.


Botox Side Effects


Botox is a relatively safe means of controlling pain, however some side effects have been reported. These include symptoms akin to influenza, where the patient may have a fever, chill, muscle pain, dizziness or a feeling of being lightheaded.


These symptoms are not life threatening so there is no substantial risks associated with using botox. However, as a matter of routine, the primary treatment option remains physiotherapy and stretching, with botox introduced where these treatment options have failed to ease the problem.






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