02 October 2012

Botox May Help Treat Depression

In the first randomized, controlled study on the effect of botulinum toxin—known commercially as Botox—on depression, researchers investigated whether it might aid patients with major depressive disorder who had not responded to antidepressant medications. 

Participants in the treatment group were given a single dose (consisting of five injections) of botulinum toxin in the area of the face between and just above the eyebrows, whereas the control group was given placebo injections. Depressive symptoms in the treatment group decreased 47 percent after six weeks, an improvement that remained through the 16-week study period. The placebo group had a 9 percent reduction in symptoms. 

The findings appeared in May in the Journal of Psychiatric Research. Study author M. Axel Wollmer, a psychiatrist at the University of Basel in Switzerland, believes the treatment “interrupts feedback from the facial musculature to the brain, which may be involved in the development and maintenance of negative emotions.” Past studies have shown that Botox impairs people's ability to identify others' feelings, and the new finding adds more evidence: the muscles of the face are instrumental for identifying and experiencing emotions, not just communicating them.

Scientific American

1 comment:

DydyLouis said...

It would be great if botox could treat depression but I really don't know what to say about this.
I know this treatment works great for migraines or excessive sweating and off course wrinkles, but to treat depression I think it's too much.

Next week I have an appointment to get a new round of botox in Ottawa and I will definitely ask my doctor about this, because if it really works, I have a few friends that would need it immediately.