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Ann Neurol. 1990 Oct;28(4):512-5.

Treatment of spasticity with botulinum toxin: a double-blind study.

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  • 1Belzberg Laboratory of Clinical Neuroscience, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.


We studied the effect of botulinum-A toxin on spasticity of the leg adductors in 9 patients who were either chair-bound or bed-bound with chronic stable multiple sclerosis. We injected botulinum toxin (400 mouse units) or placebo into the adductor muscles in a randomized, crossover, double-blind design. Two physicians, who were unaware of the treatment order, used an objective rating scale and independently assessed the patients; interobserver correlation was excellent (r = 0.93-0.81). We found that botulinum toxin produced a significant reduction in spasticity (p = 0.009) and a significant improvement in the ease of nursing care (p = 0.009). There were no adverse effects during this short-term trial. This is the first demonstration of the beneficial effect of botulinum toxin on focal spastic muscle contractions.

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