Double-blind study of botulinum A toxin injections into the gastrocnemius muscle in patients with cerebral palsy

Gait Posture. 1999 Sep;10(1):1-9. doi: 10.1016/s0966-6362(99)00012-0.


The purpose of this study was to quantify the gait of subjects receiving two injections of either botulinum A toxin or saline vehicle into the gastrocnemius muscle(s). The study group consisted of cerebral palsy patients who walked with an equinus gait pattern. This study was a randomized, double-blinded, parallel clinical trial of 20 subjects. All were studied by gait analysis before and after the injections. There were no adverse effects. Peak ankle dorsiflexion in stance and swing significantly improved in subjects who received the drug and not in controls. Results of this double blind study give support to the short term efficacy of botulinum toxin A to improve gait in selected patients with cerebral palsy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Ankle Joint / physiopathology
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A / administration & dosage
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A / therapeutic use*
  • Cerebral Palsy / therapy*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Electromyography
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gait / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intramuscular
  • Male
  • Muscle Contraction / physiology
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology*
  • Neuromuscular Agents / administration & dosage
  • Neuromuscular Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Pharmaceutical Vehicles
  • Placebos
  • Prospective Studies
  • Range of Motion, Articular / physiology
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Videotape Recording
  • Walking / physiology


  • Neuromuscular Agents
  • Pharmaceutical Vehicles
  • Placebos
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Botulinum Toxins, Type A