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Depression in blepharospasm: a question of facial feedback?

Authors Bedarf JR, Kebir S, Michelis JP, Wabbels B, Paus S

Received 4 May 2017

Accepted for publication 23 June 2017

Published 14 July 2017 Volume 2017:13 Pages 1861—1865


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder

Janis Rebecca Bedarf,1 Sied Kebir,1,2 Joan Philipp Michelis,1,3 Bettina Wabbels,4 Sebastian Paus1

1Department of Neurology, University of Bonn, Bonn, 2Department of Neurology, University of Essen, Essen, Germany; 3Movement Disorders Center, Department of Neurology, Bern University Hospital, Bern, Switzerland; 4Department of Ophthalmology, University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany

Abstract: Depression is the most important nonmotor symptom in blepharospasm (BL). As facial expression influences emotional perception, summarized as the facial feedback hypothesis, we investigated if patients report fewer depressive symptoms if injections of botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) include the “grief muscles” of the glabellar region, compared to treatment of orbicularis oculi muscles alone. Ninety BL patients were included, half of whom had BoNT treatment including the frown lines. While treatment pattern did not predict depressive symptoms overall, subgroup analysis revealed that in male BL patients, BoNT injections into the frown lines were associated with remarkably less depressive symptoms. We hypothesize that in BL patients presenting with dystonia of the eyebrow region, BoNT therapy should include frown line application whenever justified, to optimize nonmotor effects of BoNT denervation.

botulinum neurotoxin, blepharospasm, depression, facial feedback, frown lines, grief muscles

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