US-guided botulinum toxin injection for excessive drooling in children.

Diagnostic and interventional radiology (Ankara, Turkey)

PubMedID: 22798155

Çiftçi T, Akinci D, Yurttutan N, Akhan O. US-guided botulinum toxin injection for excessive drooling in children. Diagn Interv Radiol. 2013;19(1):56-60.
We aimed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of botulinum toxin A (BTX-A) injections under ultrasonography (US) guidance for children with excessive drooling.

Between January 2006 and January 2011, 44 BTX-A injections into bilateral submandibular glands were performed in 20 children (mean age, 9.1 years; range, 3-16 years; gender, 15 boys and 5 girls) under intravenous sedation. Efficacy of the injections was evaluated 4-12 weeks after the injection. Severity of drooling was assessed using the Teacher Drooling Scale (TDS). If the patient or the patient's caregiver reported a good initial response, injections were then repeated periodically when drooling reached the preinjection score. If there was no response or suboptimal response, a booster injection of BTX-A was given after one month.

Technical success rate was 100%. No procedure-related major or minor complication was detected. One family (5%) reported intermittent problems with swallowing due to viscous saliva. A successful outcome was defined as a minimum two point reduction in TDS score. This outcome occurred for 8 of 20 patients four weeks after the first injection. After consecutive sessions, clinical success was achieved at the end of the 12 weeks for 16 patients (80%). The mean TDS score decreased from 4.75 to 2.1 at the end of the study for all patients (P < 0.05). Four patients did not respond to BTXA injection. Submandibular resection was applied to 3 of 4 unresponsive patients. Two patients had complete remission after surgery, but one patient showed excessive drooling that could not be controlled.

US-guided submandibular BTX-A injection is a safe and effective procedure in treating drooling in children. It can be performed under intravenous sedation and does not require general anesthesia.