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Neurology. 2008 May 6;70(19):1699-706. doi: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000311389.26145.95.

Assessment: Botulinum neurotoxin for the treatment of movement disorders (an evidence-based review): report of the Therapeutics and Technology Assessment Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology.

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Department of Neurology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, NY, USA.



To perform an evidence-based review of the safety and efficacy of botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) in the treatment of movement disorders.


A literature search was performed including MEDLINE and Current Contents for therapeutic articles relevant to BoNT and selected movement disorders. Authors reviewed, abstracted, and classified articles based on American Academy of Neurology criteria (Class I-IV).


The highest quality literature available for the respective indications was as follows: blepharospasm (two Class II studies); hemifacial spasm (one Class II and one Class III study); cervical dystonia (seven Class I studies); focal upper extremity dystonia (one Class I and three Class II studies); focal lower extremity dystonia (one Class II study); laryngeal dystonia (one Class I study); motor tics (one Class II study); and upper extremity essential tremor (two Class II studies).


Botulinum neurotoxin should be offered as a treatment option for the treatment of cervical dystonia (Level A), may be offered for blepharospasm, focal upper extremity dystonia, adductor laryngeal dystonia, and upper extremity essential tremor (Level B), and may be considered for hemifacial spasm, focal lower limb dystonia, and motor tics (Level C). While clinicians' practice may suggest stronger recommendations in some of these indications, evidence-based conclusions are limited by the availability of data.

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