Evaluation of outcome of different neurosurgical modalities in management of cervical dystonia

Mazen Alkarras, Adel Nabeeh, Shafik El Molla, Abdelrahman El Gayar, Zeiad Y. Fayed, Walid Abdel Ghany, Ahmed M. Raslan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Cervical dystonia is the most common form of focal dystonia and is managed by multiple modalities including repeated botulinum toxin injections, in addition to medical treatment with anticholinergics, muscle relaxants, and physiotherapy. However, surgical interventions could be beneficial in otherwise refractory patients. This study aims to report our experience in the neurosurgical management of cervical dystonia and evaluate patient outcomes using reliable outcome scores for the assessment of patients with cervical dystonia and possible complications. This case series study was conducted on 19 patients with cervical dystonia of different etiologies who underwent surgical management [ten patients underwent selective peripheral denervation, five patients underwent pallidotomy, and four patients underwent bilateral globus pallidus internus (GPi) deep brain stimulation (DBS)] in the period between July 2018 and June 2021 at Ain Shams University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt. With the assessment of surgical outcomes using the Toronto Western Spasmodic Torticollis Rating Scale (TWSTRS) and the Tsui scale 6 months postoperatively. Results: Surgical management of patients with cervical dystonia of either primary or secondary etiology was associated with significant improvement in head and neck postures after 6 months without major complications associated with the different surgical procedures. The mean improvement in total TWSTRS and Tsui scores were 51.2% and 64.8%, respectively, compared with preoperative scores, while the mean improvement in the TWSTRS subscales (severity, disability, and pain) were 40.2%, 66.9%, and 58.3%, respectively. Conclusion: Cervical dystonia patients in whom non-surgical options have failed to alleviate their symptoms can be managed surgically leading to significant improvements with minimal adverse effects. However, surgical treatment should be tailored according to several factors including but not limited to the etiology, pattern of dystonic activity, and comorbidities. Therefore, management should be tailored to achieve long-term improvement with minimal risk of complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number56
JournalEgyptian Journal of Neurology, Psychiatry and Neurosurgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • Cervical dystonia (CD)
  • Globus pallidus internus (GPi) deep brain stimulation (DBS)
  • Pallidotomy
  • Selective peripheral denervation
  • Spasmodic torticollis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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