Can Botox injections relieve arthritis pain?

Answer From April Chang-Miller, M.D.

Botox injections into arthritic joints appear to reduce pain and improve function. Results from several scientific studies have been promising, but larger clinical trials are needed.

Botox is the best known of a group of medications that use various forms of botulinum toxin to temporarily paralyze muscle activity. Other medications that contain botulinum toxin include Dysport, Myobloc and Xeomin. This toxin is produced by the microbe that causes botulism, a type of food poisoning.

So far, participants in various studies have reported improvement in arthritis pain and joint function after Botox injections. Botulinum toxin works by blocking the transmission of certain chemical signals that relay information between nerves and the brain.

These preliminary studies have been small, and many of them didn't include a control group to see if the botulinum toxin injections work better than placebo. So there's much left to learn about the possible role of Botox injections in arthritis treatment.

While research continues, proven treatment options — such as exercise, weight loss and medication — remain the focus of most arthritis treatment plans.

Aug. 07, 2019 See more Expert Answers

See also

  1. 5 signs a psoriasis support group is right for you
  2. 6 ways to manage itchy skin when you have psoriasis
  3. After a flood, are food and medicines safe to use?
  4. Arthritis
  5. Arthritis pain: Do's and don'ts
  6. Arthritis rehabilitation
  7. Arthroscopy
  8. Brucellosis
  9. Can arthritis pain medications be harmful?
  10. Can psoriasis make it hard to sleep?
  11. Chronic pain: Medication decisions
  12. Crohn's Crisis
  13. Crohn's disease
  14. Crohn's disease symptom: Is fatigue common?
  15. Crohn's or Colitis
  16. CT scan
  17. CT scans: Are they safe?
  18. Ease stress to reduce your psoriasis flares
  19. Exercise and chronic disease
  20. Exercising with arthritis
  21. Gluten sensitivity and psoriasis: What's the connection?
  22. Henoch-Schonlein purpura
  23. IBD and colon cancer: How often do you need screening?
  24. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  25. Intermittent fasting
  26. Is the Mediterranean diet good for psoriasis?
  27. Isometric exercise
  28. Joint pain
  29. Joint pain: Rheumatoid arthritis or parvovirus?
  30. Joint replacement
  31. Living better with psoriasis
  32. Psoriasis-related health risks
  33. MRI
  34. MSM for arthritis pain: Is it safe?
  35. nail psoriasis
  36. Paget's disease of bone
  37. Prednisone risks, benefits
  38. Prednisone withdrawal: Why taper down slowly?
  39. Pregnancy and breast-feeding with psoriasis
  40. Psoriasis
  41. Psoriasis and clinical trials
  42. Psoriasis and intimacy
  43. Psoriasis and your self-esteem
  44. Psoriasis diet: Can changing your diet treat psoriasis?
  45. Identifying psoriasis triggers
  46. Psoriasis: Get the most out of your treatment
  47. Psoriasis: How can I protect my skin during a workout?
  48. Fish oil supplements
  49. Psoriasis treatment options
  50. Psoriasis: What if I get psoriatic arthritis, too?
  51. Psoriasis: What to share with your doctor
  52. Scalp psoriasis vs. seborrheic dermatitis
  53. Seeing Inside the Heart with MRI
  54. Cane tips
  55. Slide show: 5 ways to thrive with psoriasis through the holidays
  56. Slide show: Caring for your skin when you have psoriasis
  57. Hand exercises for people with arthritis
  58. Joint protection
  59. Types of psoriasis
  60. Walker tips
  61. Tai chi
  62. Ultrasound
  63. Vasculitis
  64. MRI
  65. Tai chi
  66. Water exercise
  67. Alternative psoriasis treatments
  68. What are the risks of vaccinations for people living with psoriasis?
  69. What's the best way to manage scalp psoriasis?
  70. X-ray
  71. Yucca: Can it relieve arthritis pain?