Botulinum toxin may also be used in hemifacial spasm (involuntary facial contractions), blepharospasm, (involuntary eye closure), some voice disorders (adductor laryngeal dystonia), focal limb dystonias (such as writer’s cramp), essential tremor and some forms of spastic bladder disorders.
This guidelines project was chaired by David M. Simpson, MD, Professor of Neurology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology. To develop the guidelines, the authors reviewed and analyzed systematically all available scientific studies on the topic. The guidelines appear in the May 6, 2008, issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.
Since its introduction 28 years ago, botulinum toxin has become the most effective treatment for numerous movement disorders associated with increased muscle contraction. The drug is injected into affected muscles.
A surprising finding was that botulinum toxin is probably not effective in the treatment of migraine or chronic tension-type headache. “Based on currently available data, botulinum toxin injections should not be offered to patients with episodic migraine and chronic tension-type headaches,” said pain guidelines author Markus Naumann, MD, Professor of Neurology, Head of the Department of Neurology at Augsburg Hospital in Germany, and member of the American Academy of Neurology. “It is no better than placebo injections for these types of headache.”
“We found that botulinum toxin is possibly effective in relieving low back pain and therefore may be considered as a treatment option,” said Naumann. “However, our recommendation is based on data from only one study in a small number of patients. More research is needed to define the place of botulinum toxin in treating this condition, in comparison to other treatment options.”
The guidelines are endorsed by the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 21,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to improving patient care through education and research. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, Parkinson disease, and multiple sclerosis.
Angela Babb | American Academy of Neurology
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The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
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Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
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The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
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