REVIEW – March 2016

Clinical application of Botulinum toxin

Authors: Karin Rallmann, Maarika Liik, Pille Taba

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Botulinum toxin is the strongest biological toxin that may lead to lethal outcome through accidental use, as a result of flaccid paresis and ventilation insufficiency. Out of seven serotypes of Botulinum toxin, two are used for theraputic purposes:first for strabism but at present the main indications are dystonias and spasticity. In recent years, the list of indications has expanded, including hyperhidrosis and sialorrhoea, sphincter disorders, and headache. Besides medical use, Botulinum toxin also has been used for cosmetic purposes. Despite its high toxicity, adverse events are infrequent. In Estonia, Botulinum toxin type A (BotoxA and Dysport) was introduced for treatment of dystonias 20 years ago; currently it is used for a broader range of indications, including spasticity as well as secretory and sphincter disorders.