Botulinum toxin a shot in the arm for preventing MS tremor: research

July 2, 2012

Botulinum toxin may help prevent shaking or tremor in the arms and hands of people with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to new research published in the July 3, 2012, print issue of Neurology.

"Treatments in use for tremor in MS are not sufficiently effective and new alternatives are needed," said study author Anneke van der Walt, MD, consultant neurologist at The Royal Melbourne Hospital and research fellow with the University of Melbourne in Australia.

For the study 23 people with MS were given botulinum type A injections or a saline for three months. Then they received the opposite treatment for the next three months. Scientists measured the tremor severity and their ability to write and draw before, during and after receiving the treatments. Video assessments were also taken every six weeks for six months.

The study found that people saw significant improvement in tremor severity, writing and drawing at six weeks and three months after the botulinum toxin treatment compared to after placebo. In tremor severity, the participants improved an average of two points on a 10-point scale, bringing their tremor from moderate to mild. In writing and drawing, participants improved by an average of one point on a 10-point scale.

"Our study suggests a new way to approach arm tremor related to MS where there are currently major treatment challenges and it also sets the framework for larger studies," said van der Walt.

developed in 42 percent of people after treatment with botulinum toxin compared to six percent after placebo. The weakness was generally mild and went away within two weeks.

Explore further: Botulinum toxin does not cure common forms of neck pain

Related Stories

Botulinum toxin does not cure common forms of neck pain

July 6, 2011

There is no evidence that Botulinum toxin injections reduce chronic neck pain or associated headaches, says a group of scientists who reviewed nine trials involving a total of 503 participants. Their findings are published ...

AAN releases updated guideline for treating essential tremor

October 19, 2011

The American Academy of Neurology is releasing an updated guideline on how to best treat essential tremor, which is the most common type of tremor disorder and is often confused with other movement disorders such as Parkinson's ...

Recommended for you

Scientists show how memories are linked in the brain

July 22, 2016

Some memories just seem to go together. Think about an important experience in your life. You may also closely remember another experience that happened around that time too, like exchanging vows at your wedding, and then ...

Novel compounds arrested epilepsy development in mice

July 22, 2016

A team led by Nicolas Bazan, MD, PhD, Boyd Professor and Director of LSU Health New Orleans' Neuroscience Center of Excellence, has developed neuroprotective compounds that may prevent the development of epilepsy. The findings ...

Scientists apply new imaging tool to common brain disorders

July 20, 2016

A Yale-led team of researchers developed a new approach to scanning the brain for changes in synapses that are associated with common brain disorders. The technique may provide insights into the diagnosis and treatment of ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.