BOTOX is a formulation of botulinum toxin type A. It is derived from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. This bacterium produces a protein that blocks the release of acetylcholine and relaxes muscles. Type A is just one of seven different types of botulinum toxin (A, B, C1, D, E, F, and G), and each has different properties and actions. No two of these botulinum toxins are alike.
Today, BOTOX is produced in controlled laboratory conditions and given in extremely small therapeutic doses. It has helped over 1 million patients worldwide with conditions caused by overactive muscles.
Botox represents a natural non-surgical way to rejuvenate an aging face. Dynamic wrinkles are the lines that form from years of smiling, squinting and frowning. Botox can dramatically reduce dynamic wrinkles and create a more rested and youthful look by relaxing the muscles which create wrinkles and lines. For many years, physicians have safely and successfully used Botox to control involuntary blinking and facial tics. While Botox has few negative side effects, doctors noticed that patients receiving Botox injections experienced a dramatic reduction in frown lines and wrinkles around the eyes. Depending on where it is injected, Botox works by blocking the action of the muscles responsible for frown lines or crow’s feet, resulting in smoother skin around the eyes and/or forehead. A minute amount of the substance is injected directly into the muscle, and within 24-72 hours, the muscles relax, reducing the appearance of frown lines or crows’ feet.
BOTOX is also being used to reduce excessive sweating in the axilla.
Treatment is in the form of multiple injections made using very fine needles with ice or local anesthetic cream to numb the area. The injections are not painful. The effects start to appear in a couple of days and the best result is seen in a week. The results generally last about 4-6 months and then the injection has to be repeated.
How does BOTOX eliminate wrinkles?
A few drops of Botox are injected with a tiny needle into the muscle that creates the wrinkle. Botox can inactivate the muscles that produce the wrinkles, thereby causing the lines to disappear or dramatically diminish.
WHERE IS BOTOX USED?
BOTOX is used on the face, only around the eyes and forehead so as not to affect a patient’s smile. It is important to understand that Botox only relaxes the overactive facial muscles that cause wrinkles. Your skin will feel the same and you will have normal sensation in all treated areas. Muscles that are not treated are not affected.
IS BOTOX SAFE?
BOTOX has been used safely and successfully by cosmetic surgeons for over 20 years and for wrinkle therapy since the early 1990’s. Although it is a toxin, it is safe and there have been no serious side effects reported. The most serious side effect is drooping of the upper lid due to paralysis of the lid muscle or double vision caused by paralysis of small muscles of the eye. This complication is temporary and will disappear once the effect of Botox wears off. This is avoided by keeping the injection away from the lid and not lying down for 4 hours after the injection. No systemic side effect has been reported to date. There may be some minor bruising which can be covered up with makeup.
What are the advantages of BOTOX?
BOTOX is a quick (treatment takes 10 minutes) and effective (results within 4 to 7 days) way to remove wrinkles.
Person can immediately resume full activity. There is no physical evidence that you had a cosmetic procedure done.
The effect of Botox is reversible-lasting between 3 to 9 months depending on the number of previous treatments.
A memory response may develop with repeated Botox injections if they are done every 3 months for approximately one-year. So, although the effects are not permanent, there may be a gradual lengthening of the time interval between treatments. This will mean fewer treatments to obtain the same effect.
The head should be held elevated for 4 hours or more (no lying down). Ice application to the injected area will help in reduction of bruising and swelling. Makeup can be used within an hour. Expect results to start appearing in a couple of days and best results take a week.
Botox is a safe, non-surgical approach to facial rejuvenation.
If any of the following apply, you should not receive Botox injections:
Have myasthenia gravis
Have neuromuscular disease
Have an allergy to human albumin
Have an allergy to botulinum toxin
If you are now pregnant or breast feeding
If you have had beer, wine or alcohol in the last one week
If you have taken aspirin or anti-inflammatory medication in the last two weeks.
What to Do before Your Botox Injections?
No alcohol one week prior to treatment
No anti-inflammatory medication or aspirin two weeks before treatment.
What to Do after Your Botox Injections?
Do not lie down for 4 hours after the treatment
Do not massage the treated muscles, this can cause the Botox to spread to the muscles around the eyes.
Exercise the muscles every 15 minutes for 1 hour after the treatment, the Botox attaches better to active muscles.
What to Expect after Your Botox Injections?
The treated areas will take 5 – 10 days to soften; treatment will last 4 – 6 months.
Can You Have Repeat Botox Injections?
Yes, Injections can be repeated every 4 – 6 months. There are no known long term side effects. With time some patients will require less frequent treatments as they break the habit of contracting frown lines and other muscles of facial expression.