HC Deb 20 May 2002 vol 386 c151W
Mr. Swayne

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding for botulinum toxin injections is available to patients in Fordingbridge; and if he will make a statement. [55901]

Ms Blears

The information is not held centrally.

Mr. Swayne

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement about(a) the effectiveness and (b) the availability on the NHS of botulinum toxin injections; and if he will make a statement. [55900]

Jacqui Smith

For several years, botulinum toxin in very carefully timed and measured doses has been used to treat overactive muscles in adults, particularly around the eyes and in the neck. More recently, it has been used as part of the management of spasticity and dystonia sufferers. It is also useful for people with cerebral palsy. It helps relax muscles so they become less stiff—and this helps walking and movement. Botulinum toxin is usually most effective if the condition affects only a limited group of muscles.

A decision on whether botulinum toxin treatment should be given to a particular patient would be made by the clinician at the National Health Service trust to whom the patient was referred. The injections are available in certain neurology, ophthalmology, and ear, nose and throat clinics.