Also Known As: Botulinum Toxin A
Botox® is the trade name of Botulinum Toxin “type A”. Cosmetic surgeons inject a low dose of this protein, which is derived from botulism toxin, into the skin to minimize wrinkles and lines on the face. When used as much as necessary, it relaxes facial muscles, which results in a smooth facial appearance.
History of BOTOX®
In the late 1960s, Botulinum toxins were researched in treating neurological disorders. In 1989, it was approved by the FDA to treat various eye muscle disorders such as misalignment of eyes, strabismus, uncontrollable blinking, tics or blephorspasm. In 2000, it was approved to treat a disorder that causes shoulder and neck contractions, known as cervical dystonia.
From treating eye disorders with Botulinum toxins, surgeons observed that it softened frown lines between the eyebrows. Due to this unexpected side effect, Botox® was given its FDA Approval in 2002 for reducing the severity of frown lines for approximately 120 days.
Benefits of BOTOX®
According to statistics, almost 90% of men and women aging 18 to 65, who have moderate to severe frown lines, have had significant positive effects during their first month after Botox® treatment.
Botox® procedures can also treat forehead creases, thick neckbands and crow’s feet near the eyes. It is also used to treat excessive sweating of under arms and palms.
Compared to other surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures, Botox® procedures is the safest, painless and most affordable.
Candidate for Botox Cosmetics
Although Botox® has been used to treat adults of all ages, surgeons considers a criteria for determining whether this procedure is appropriate for a certain patient. Remember to check with your surgeon if you fit the following criteria.
Botox® Cosmetics are recommended for patients:
With facial and neck wrinkles
With excessive underarm and palm sweating
With good physical and mental health
With a motivation for appearance improvement
With Realistic expectations
Without alcohol problems
Without drug abuse and anabolic steroids usage
Without smoking habits
The BOTOX® Procedure
The entire Botox® procedure takes only minutes. Small doses of Botox® are injected into the affected muscle area. The toxins bind to the nerve endings and blocks acetylcholine release, causing a hindrance to muscle contraction.
Once injected, Botox® paralyzes the injected muscle area, while leaving the surrounding muscles untouched.
When the muscle relaxes, it creates a smooth surface that can last for three to six months.
Side Effects of BOTOX®
Although it occurs rarely, a patient can have allergic reactions to Botox®. It can also cause temporary discomforts such as bruising, headaches, hematoma, ectropion or eyelid ptosis.
Botox® injection can cause your face to have a surprised look or a permanent frown. However, these inconveniences are temporary and usually vanish within 24 hours.
Recovery After BOTOX® Procedure
Immediately after the procedure, the doctor may advise you to hold an icepack to the treated area for several minutes. This cold treatment helps in keeping the Botox® within the injected area as well as reducing the discomfort and bruising from the injection.
With BOTOX® rejuvenation procedures, the swelling goes down within a day or two. Generally, there is no recovery period. Although the needle prick can be visible, it usually disappears within 24 hours. You may directly go back to your normal, daily activities.
After a Botox® procedure, the results will be visible in 3 to 7 days. Although the results are not permanent, it normally lasts for three to six months.
As the Botulinum toxins wears off, the wrinkles will slowly return. However, it will not be worse than before you were treated.
Repeated Botox® injections, with an interval of eight to twelve months, can result in longer lasting effects.
Generally, the Botox® procedure can be done in the doctor’s office or at a hospital’s operating room. This may vary depending on your budget and preferences.
The average price for Botox® procedures is approximately $200 to $700 per area, excluding hospital stay and operating room facilities. The prices may vary depending on the region, surgeon and other fees. Ask your surgeon for a personalized estimate price of the procedure.
Risks, Complications and Contradictions
Patients who are taking antibiotics are at risk for adverse reactions. However, this can be prevented if you have consulted your doctor prior to the Botox® injection.
The effects of Botox® Cosmetic may be increased with the use of drugs that can interfere with neuromuscular transmission. Make sure to disclose any medications you are currently taking before the procedure.
Pregnant women are advised to delay the Botox® injections until the baby is born due to possible crossing of the placenta. In addition, women who are still breastfeeding should perform the procedure only when their newborn is no longer dependent upon them for nutrition.