Evaluation and treatment of synkinesis with botulinum toxin following facial nerve palsy

Elena Dalla Toffola, Francesco Furini, Carla Redaelli, Elena Prestifilippo, Maurizio Bejor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose.To assess the effect and efficacy of botulinum toxin type A (BTX-A) in reducing synkinesis in aberrant facial nerve regeneration (following facial paralysis). Method.A total of 55 sessions of BTX-A (Botox®) infiltration were performed on 30 patients (23 female) with synkinesis after facial palsy. Each subject was injected with 2.5 units of BTX-A in each injection site (the sites were chosen on a case-by-case basis). The synkinetic muscles targeted include: orbicularis oculi, zygomaticus major, depressor labii inferioris, platysma, healthy frontalis and healthy corrugator supercilii. The patients were examined using the Sunnybrook Facial Grading System, both before the BTX-A treatment and after an average of 35 days. Results.All 30 patients experienced improvement to the synkinesis after treatment. Total scores: median pre-BTX-A: 40; post 53 p=0.004. Resting symmetry scores: mean pre-BTX-A -7.1; post: -3.5; median pre -5 [interquartile range (IQR) -10 to -5]; post: -5 (IQR -5 to 0); p=0.0001. Symmetry of voluntary movement median pre-BTX-A: 56 post 60 p=0.10. Synkinesis scores: median pre-BTX-A: -9 post -3 p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1414-1418
Number of pages5
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • botulinum toxin
  • Facial palsy
  • synkinesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation


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