7.20am Wednesday November 29, 2006
SYDNEY - A drug famed for smoothing women's wrinkles may soon be soothing their period pain too.
In a world-first trial at Sydney's Royal Hospital for Women, doctors have begun injecting Botox into the womb of women with severe and prolonged monthly cramps.
Up to 10 per cent of fertile women suffer from period pain, when the uterus contracts erratically and "fights" against itself.
Professor Thierry Vancaillie from the department of endo-gynaecology said anecdotal evidence seems to show the toxic bacteria botulinum toxin can paralyse the region and bring relief.
"Like it works on the face, we believe if you inject Botox into the uterus it relaxes the muscles by stopping the nerves from working," Prof Vancaillie.
"It's really logical but it hasn't been tried yet which is amazing."
Botox is most widely used for cosmetic purposes but has also been shown to be effective in treating cerebral palsy, neck and facial spasms, chronic migraine, incontinence and chronic sweating.