<- Home <- Arhive <- Vol. 28, Issue 2, June 2020

Rom J Leg Med28(2)208-211(2020)
© Romanian Society of Legal Medicine


M. G. Barbu, D. C. Thompson, M. N. Popescu, C. Beiu, M. M. Mihai, C. I. Enachescu,

Abstract: Background. The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic largely restricted the access of chronic patients to basic healthcare. One of the categories heavily affected by the lockdown were patients with dystonia. Objective. To assess the impact of botulinum toxin (BoNT) injection therapy discontinuation on the physical status and quality of life (QoL) of patients suffering from dystonia. Methods. A questionnaire was applied between April 1st and April 15th, 2020 to a group of 50 dystonia patients that met the inclusion criteria for this study. Results. The majority of the respondents (92%) indicated that their greatest issue during SARS-CoV-2 lockdown was the lack of access to regular BoNT injections. Over 50% of respondents stated that they experienced atypical physical pain, followed by the inability to perform usual activities, with further impact on the QoL. Alteration of the physical status due to the inability to follow an in-clinic rehabilitation program was also reported by up to 25% of patients. In 10% of patients, dystonia became more severe, and led to further afflictions, with a great impact on their QoL. Younger dystonia participants registered lower QoL scores than older participants. Furthermore, isolation and income reduction were found to cause a moderate impact on QoL in most patients and may be associated with mild to moderate forms of depression. Conclusion. The healthcare field must work to ensure that all these patients have access to their regular treatment plan in a safe environment. Meanwhile, recommendations should be made for these individuals to follow an adequate physical therapy program at home.
Keywords: dystonia, botulinum toxin, BoNT, medical rehabilitation, SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19.

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