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Squeezing the Data From Squeezing the Face (with added poison)

Should patients — after they have had poison injected into their face — then squeeze their face? If so, then how often, and exactly where? Those are the bundled questions this study tried to get at, with perhaps a hint that further attempts to answer the questions might be able to produce some hint of possible success of some kind:

A Comparison of Facial Muscle Squeezing versus Non-facial Muscle Squeezing on the Efficacy of BotulinumToxin-A Injections for the Treatment of Facial Dystonia,” P. O’Reilly, J. Ross, J. Norris, and R. Malhotra [pictured here], Orbit, vol. 31, no. 6, 2012, pp. 400-403. The authors, at Queen Victoria Hospital, East Grinstead, West Sussex, UK, explain:

“Twelve patients underwent the non-squeeze / squeeze / non-squeeze protocol and the remaining 14 patients underwent the squeeze / non-squeeze / squeeze protocol. All patients experienced at least one treatment with and one treatment without performing post-treatment squeezing exercises….

“Although this study failed to demonstrate an enhanced effect of botulinum toxin-A with muscle contracture in a clinical setting, further studies looking at a more defined subset and larger number of patients could possibly lead to statistical significance.”

The authors also remark: “Although there is a theoretical risk of inadvertent spread of botulinum toxin-A with extensive muscle contraction, no such cases were demonstrated here.”

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