Functional outcome of intrathecal baclofen administration for severe spasticity.Clin Neurol Neurosurg 2005; 107(4):289-95CN
To estimate the functional benefit in patients with severe spasticity treated with intrathecal baclofen infusion through an implantable pump and to stress the need for functional assessment of these patients with a functional scale.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
Between 1999 and 2003, 22 patients with a long history of severe and disabling pharmaceutically intractable spasticity, underwent implantation of a pump for continuous intrathecal baclofen infusion. The patients were subdivided into two categories according to the aetiology of spasticity: 15 had Multiple Sclerosis and seven had suffered a Spinal Cord Injury at different levels (from C4 to T11). Clinical status was assessed with the Ashworth and Penn spasm scales. Functional benefits were evaluated with the Barthel index score and pain relief with a self-reported visual analogue pain scale.
Postoperatively, all patients presented improvement in spasticity, reduction of spasm frequency, significant improvement in functional status, enhancement of life comfort and reduction of pain.
Reduction of spasticity and spasms achieved with intrathecally delivered baclofen, leads to functional improvement and pain relief.