Botulinum toxin, commonly known as the drug Botox® – bringing the fountain of youth to aging baby boomers – has shown promising results in treating Raynaud’s patients across several studies by reducing pain and the presence of skin ulcers in study participants.
Previous research, however, has been only directional, as study designs did not include control groups for a more scientific comparison, did not account for differences in the degree of severity among participants, and studies varied the doses used in treating patients.
To more conclusively study the use of this treatment, Johns Hopkins researchers are currently enrolling patients for a Phase 3 clinical trial to determine whether botulinum toxin can relieve symptoms of Raynaud’s in patients where it is secondary to scleroderma. The study is designed to help overcome some of the issues associated with drawing firm conclusions from previous research of the drug’s ability to control blood vessel spasms in Raynaud’s patients. Allergan, manufacturer of Botox®, is sponsoring the research.
Enrollment in the trial began in January 2015 and is expected to be completed by December 2016. For more information here’s the article recently published in Scleroderma News and the more detailed description of the study on ClinicalTrials.gov that includes contact information if you’d like to participate.