Can Botox Treat Achalasia?

Last Editorial Review: 1/11/2018

Ask the experts

In reading an article in the NEJM, in discussing the treatment of botox injections for achalasia, it stated that the tosin may be transported to the spinal cord of brain stem by retrograde axonal delivery. Please tell me what this means, and also any information you may have on botox injections for achalasia.

Doctor's response

If you have read the NEJM article you know most of what there is to know about botox injections for achalasia.

Nerve cells have long projections (axons) that travel many centimeters and then make contact with projections from other nerve cells. Many of these projections from nerve cells from organs within the body make contact with nerve cells (or their projections) in the spinal cord or brain stem. There is a flow of chemicals in both directions through these projections, and it is possible for injected substances to be taken up by the nerve cells and transported through the projections.


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