Ask the Expert - The Benefits of Botox with Dr. Nicholas Appleby
October 4, 2016
What is Botox™ ?
The first thing that comes to most our minds is Hollywood celebrities getting their eyebrows and wrinkles fixed. Most people don’t know that Botox™ is just one brand name of an injectable medicine (botulinum) which has many other amazing medical uses. One of the greatest uses is in helping to treat a patient’s spasticity.
What is spasticity?
Spasticity is tightness in the muscles that occurs after an injury to the brain, spinal cord, or part of the muscles. A stroke is the most common cause of spasticity. Several studies show that spasticity occurs in up to 42% of patients after a stroke. This tightness can affect one or more limbs or even a patient’s back or neck muscles. Spasticity can cause significant pain and disability. The spasms associated with spasticity can cause: a tight fist, bent elbow, stiff knee, pointed foot, toe dragging, or generalized stiffness in muscles.
How does Botox™ help with spasticity?
One of the great benefits of Botox™ is that it works right at the level of the muscle. Many oral spasticity medications work centrally (at the level of the brain and spinal cord) and can cause sedation and fatigue. Using Botox™, a trained physician can deliver treatment right to the exact muscles that need it and leave the unaffected muscles alone. Botox™ is an essential and amazing tool to have in the treatment of spasticity.
I have a personal passion for spasticity management. There are so many patients out there who have spasticity and do not even know it or are not aware that it can be treated. There are many ways that a trained physician can help improve function and decrease discomfort. I offer a comprehensive approach to spasticity management. This includes:
- Oral medications
- EMG guided botulinum (Botox™) injections
- Baclofen pump management
I am excited to be bringing the excellent training that I received in comprehensive spasticity management under the direction of Dr. John R. McGuire, a national leader, back to my home city.