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Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study of
Intradermal Botulinum Toxin A in Chronic Pain
E. Chevlen
Posted: September 2005  
Journal of Pain, Vol. 6, March 2005

Animal studies suggest that subcutaneous injection of botulinum toxin A (BTX-A), performed before the application of a noxious stimulus, had antinociceptive effect. This pilot study tested whether intradermal BTX-A has analgesic properties in humans. Ten adults with symmetrical chronic back or thigh paih, regardless of cause, gave informed consent and were treated in double-blind fashion. All subjects received BTX-A in the painful area on one side, and an equal volume of saline in the contralateral painful area.

Subjects were considered to be responders if they reported significant asymmetry of pain intensity of the treated sites during the preceding 24 hours. Responders had their pain intensity measured by two visual analog scales monthly until the response ended. All subjects reported that the saline and BTX-A injections were equally painful, with the injection pain subsiding completely within 2-3 minutes. No other adverse effect was noted. Three responders reported less pain on the side treated with BTX-A, and one reported less pain on the placebo side.

This study suggests that intradermal BTX-A has analgesic properties in humans.