There are a variety of treatment options used in combination with medication and physical therapy to manage symptoms of debilitating neurological diseases such as dystonia and spasticity and provide patients greater independence. In these conditions, faulty connections between the brain and muscle cause parts of the body to spasm. Botulinum toxin injections, or botox therapy, can be one of the fist lines of treatment for many movement disorders. Less invasive than deep brain stimulation, Botox injections can offer relief of symptoms for patients who have spasticity or dystonia.
Spasticity, or muscle stiffness, is a common problem for patients with cerebral palsy and one of the most common side effects of damage to the brain and spinal cord. Spasticity also affects nearly one in three patients who have suffered a stroke, with symptoms most localized in the arm, wrist and hands. Botox therapy used in combination with physical therapy can often reduce the stroke patient’s symptoms so he can regain mobility and function of the muscles.
The FDA upped the maximum regular tolerable dosage for Botox is 400 units for the treatment of upper limb spasticity.
Botulinum toxin injections are the most common treatment used in treating focal dystonia’s in adults. Because the drug is injected directly into the affected muscle groups rather than passed through the entire body via oral medications, Botulinum toxin is more suitable for treating dystonia’s which are focal to one or two areas of the body, but it is also sometimes part of a treatment regime for more generalized dystonia.