Can Botox Help Eye Twitches and Would Insurance Cover It?

My right eye twitches and closes hard sometimes during the day. When I sleep the muscles are always tense. I rub it during the day to make it stop. It's starting to give me wrinkles. Is there a medical term for this twitch? Would Botox help this at all? Would insurance pay for some of it? How could I prove it's for uncontrollable twitching and not just the wrinkles? One doctor told me he thinks my twitching is mental and not muscle spasms. Does that matter? It happens in my sleep.

Doctor Answers 11

Eye twitches (blepahrospasm) and Botulinum Toxin (Botox and Dysport) injection

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Eye twitches, also known as blepahrospasm, is effectively treated with Botulinum Toxin (Botox and Dysport) injection. Contact your ophthalmologist to see if they offer the treatment and/or can provide you with a referral. This is typically covered by your insurance and they will be better equipped to inform you of your financial responsibility.

Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Botox for Eyelid Spasm

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Botox treatments to relax the eyelid muscle contributing to the "twitching" called essential blepharospasm, does work very well. Insurance companies are, in my experience, interested in NOT covering procedures. I would assume your deductible might be higher than the out of pocket expense, so if it truly bothers you, take care of it.

Dr. C

John Philip Connors III, MD, FACS
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon

Botox for eyelid twitches

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Involuntary twitches of the eyelids can be of three varieties - myokymia, blepharospasm, and hemifacial spasm. Myokymia is involuntary twitching of usually one eyelid related to stress or fatigue. Rest and destressing  is the solution.

This is to be differentiated from benign essential blepharospasm in which both eyes spasm often in association with difficulty with bright lights (photophobia) and dry eye symptoms. Sleep makes blepharospasm better. Treatment for blepharospasm includes oral sedatives and botox.

The final diagnosis to consider is hemifacial spasm in which only one side is effected. Sleep does not improve hemifacial spasm. These are rarely caused by intracranial pathology, and therefore work up for hemifacial spasm includes an MRI of the brain and brainstem. Treatment is usually botox. In these medical conditions, botox is covered by insurance.

What you are describing is hemifacial spasm. First you need the appropriate diagnosis. I recommend consulting an oculoplastic surgeon or neuro-ophthalmologist.

Carlo Rob Bernardino, MD
Monterey Oculoplastic Surgeon

Botox for Blepharospasm

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The condition you describe is termed essential blepharospasm. It is most certainly an indication for Botox and other botulinum toxin products. Some insurance will reimburse the cost of the procedure but unfortunately this can be quite difficult. Some insurance companies require the physician to buy the botulinum toxin product from them and most who will cover the procedure require preauthorization. I would suggest calling your insurance company to determine their particular requirements.

D.J. Verret, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon

Botox and Bleparospasm

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Botox works very well for essential blepharospasm (eyelid twitching).  However, given the priorities of most insurance companies (the CEO of United health care retired in 2006 with a 1billion dollar plus retirement package), you can assume that payment for essential blepharospasm is not high on their list.

Stephen Prendiville, MD
Fort Myers Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 103 reviews

Botox can help eyelid twitching. May be covered by insurance, may not.

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The type of eyelid spasm and twitching you describe is likely improvable with a delicate and appropriate use of Botox. I have had a patient recently treated with Botox for cosmetic purposes that told me it actually helped her eyelid twitching as a side effect.

To try to get insurance coverage, it is best to see a neurologist or neuroophthalmologist who had experience in treating this as a medical disorder.

Jessica J. Krant, MD, MPH
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Eyelid twitching and Botox

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If your eyelid is closing hard, you may have developed what's called, "Essential blepharospasm" which is a neurologic condition and can be treated very well with Botox. I would encourage you to see an Ophthalmologist or oculoplastic surgeon for this treatment. Call first to make sure they treat this condition and they would evaluate you to see if that's the correct diagnosis and discuss the treatment plan. Good luck.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Twitching eyes

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Twitching eyes in many cases is due to dryness or being tired.  As for treatment with Botox for this specific reason, I would see a neurologist to go over it with you. I am not sure if insurance will cover this for you.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Botox Help Eye Twitches and Would Insurance Cover It

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As stated by the previous posters - YES!. As for insurance to pay for this I think there is a chance but to increase the odds I would use a neurologist to inject you. The insurance company look at the injector to see if maybe you are hiding something.

Essential blepharospasm

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What you are describing sounds like essential blepharospasm. It is one of the first things treated with botox, the wrinkles came later. While you never know for sure what an insurance company will cover many times it would be covered.

Scott Tucker, MD
Winston Salem Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.