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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2006 10:16 am
by randolph
All this talk about epidurals, then recently hearing about dystonia on the radio, and remembering Dean's story in his neck book about carpal tunnel syndrome, got me wondering if anyone has heard of botox being injected into the sciatic nerve to allow renewed, painless use of the affected leg(s).

It seems that in the 60's a famous concert pianist (Leon Fleischer, I believe is his name) was debilitated by dystonia, something similar to carpal tunnel/repititive strain syndrome, but painless. He completely lost the use of his right hand: his hand muscles involuntarily constricted, and he could not open his hand to play the piano. After 35 years of fruitless search to regain use of his hand, a few years ago, botox was injected in his right elbow, into the nerve that relays info to those hand muscles. After the injection, he regains use of his hand, apparently long enough to do concerts again; but he does need injections any day he wants to play. The explanation on the effectiveness of the botox is that it blocks the errant nerve impulses to the hand that cause the involuntary constriction.

To refresh your memory about Dean's story of carpal tunnel. Apparently (correct if I'm wrong here, please) Dean developed carpal tunnel after years of playing guitar. He found complete relief from it by simply warming up his playing muscles before putting his hands on the guitar. (Interestingly, the pianist said that besides using the botox, he's learned it's essential before playing, to warm up his playing muscles, something he didn't do well, before the onset of the dystonia)

What makes this interesting to me is not that I'm hoping I can get botox injected into my sciatic nerve so I can run for hours again, (don't have that kind of money anyway) but relates to questions MJ and Rupert have been asking about the involuntary tightness of the hamstring muscles and the ability of the sciatic nerve and ruptured disc to heal.

First question: is the involuntary tightness of the hammy due to the errant firing of the sciatic nerve, like the hand constriction caused by the errant firing of that arm nerve in dystonia?

Second question: when we talk about "nerve healing", are we talking about the nerve developing an insulation from the pieces of ruptured disc and/or the body taking the pieces away from the nerve (a natural miscrodiscectomy, so to speak) so that the nerve is no longer inappropriately fired?

Third question: is the effectiveness of the epidural for sciatica pain due to a process similar to botox's effectiveness for dystonia? Just what does the epidural do that so dramatically decrease sciatic pain?

Just wondering. Randolph


PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:18 pm
by Sandy
My husband Stan who suffered a stroke one year ago that affected the left side of his body has had Botox injections in his left arm including his left hand due to spasticity in the muscles of his arm and hand. At first, along with o/t and p/t, the arm got movement back in it. The Botox injection in the hand has not really made a difference in the movement or control of the hand although he is still having o/t. He had these injections every 3 mos. since the stroke but Stan is very discouraged with its final effects. :cry:
Our neurologist is the one who administers the Botox injections.