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Papers of the Week

Papers: 12 Oct 2019 - 18 Oct 2019

Human Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2019 Nov

Exp Ther Med



Factors affecting the therapeutic effect of botulinum toxin A on trigeminal neuralgia: A follow-up retrospective study of 152 patients.


Zhang H, Lian Y, Xie N, Cheng X, Chen C, Xu H, Zheng Y
Exp Ther Med. 2019 Nov; 18(5):3375-3382.
PMID: 31602211.


Botulinum toxin A (BTX-A) is a promising therapeutic modality against trigeminal neuralgia (TN) with certain controversies pertaining to its application. To provide further information on factors influencing the treatment outcomes of BTX-A, a retrospective study with 152 patients with TN treated with BTX-A was performed. The starting time and duration of the therapeutic effect, as well as side effects, of BTX-A in the treatment of TN were analyzed by sex, age, course of disease, number of branches and injected dose. A total of 136 patients exhibited symptom improvement within 2 weeks following BTX-A treatment as evaluated using a visual analog scale (VAS). The effect of BTX-A was sustained throughout the initial 6 months of the follow-up and was demonstrated to persist for as long as 28 months. Female sex, short disease course and high injection dose (>70 units) were associated with lower long-term VAS scores. Patients receiving short-term medium-(50-70 units) or high-dose injections were more likely to be completely cured. Patients with a median disease course (1-10 years) or multiple branches were more likely to exhibit facial asymmetry. Based on the stratified analysis, female patients with a median disease course (1-10 years) exhibited a higher incidence of side effects and male patients achieved better treatment outcomes with high BTX-A doses. BTX-A effectively alleviated patients with TN in both short or long term, although the treatment efficacy may depend on patient characteristics.