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What is Botox?
Botox that is used for cosmetic purposes is a purified neurotoxin (paralyzing agent) derived from the bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is manufactured by Allergan, Inc. in Irvine, California under the strictest of regulatory methods to ensure safety and purity.
 
What is the history of Botox?
Botox has been used for a variety of medicinal and cosmetic purposes for over 20 years. Some of the uses include treatment of strabismus ("cross eye"), hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating),  migraine headaches, muscle spasm and of course, wrinkles. Botox was approved by the FDA in 2001 for cosmetic use. It is currently approved for the treatment of wrinkles in the glabellar area.
 
How does Botox work?
Botox permanently blocks nerve endings resulting in paralysis of a portion of a muscle. How much paralysis occurs is related to the dose used. The overall result is a relaxation of the injected muscle.
 
What are the places that Botox is used to reduce wrinkles?
Botox is very good at relaxing the muscles of the upper face to reduce or eliminate:
 
"Frown" lines between the eyebrows
"Surprise" lines of the forehead
"Crow's feet" or "laugh lines" around the eyes
"Lipstick bleeder lines" around the upper lip
Lines at the corner of the mouth that are directed downward toward the chin
 
How can you predict the results of Botox?
Lines and wrinkles which are caused by excessive movement of the underlying muscles typically respond to Botox treatment.  Lines and wrinkles caused by excessive sun damage or from sagging skin will not be improved by Botox.
Wrinkles that can be eliminated by pulling or putting gentle tension on the skin will be reduced with Botox. "Crease" lines or furrows of the skin that do not disappear when tensed or stretched out, may be improved but not completely removed. However, with repeated use over time, further reduction can be obtained.
 
What is treatment with Botox like?
The treatment is performed in the office. Ice and/or topical anesthesia may be used. Small quantities of the toxin are injected directly into the muscles to be treated using a tiny needle and a calibrated syringe. The injections can be considered by some to be mildly uncomfortable. Typically it takes only a few minutes to inject individual areas.
 
Are the effects permanent?
No, the effects are not permanent, however clients have noticed that with repeated injections over time, that the Botox results often begin to last longer. Typically the results last from 3-5 mos. After injection, the results are usually noticeable within 1-3 days but may not peak for 1-2 weeks. The reason Botox "wears off" is because the body produces new nerve endings to replace those that have been blocked previously by Botox.
 
What are the potential complications with Botox injections?
Mild swelling or bruising at the injection sites. Mild headaches or tightness can occur, but usually resolve within a few days. The injected muscle may not weaken enough or may be weakened unevenly requiring a touch-up injection.
The injected muscle may weaken too much, which will wear off in time. Drooping or ptosis of the upper eyelid, which lasts from a few days to 2 weeks, is seen in about 1 in 200 injections in the glabellar area, and may be treated with eye drops until it resolves by itself. Masked facies.
 
What are the restrictions after treatment with Botox?
Clients can resume normal activity the same day. Lying down flat or rubbing/massaging the injected area should be avoided for 4 hours. Clients can apply makeup immediately after the procedure.
 
Who should not be treated with Botox?
Clients with neuromuscular disorders such as myasthenia gravis. Clients who are allergic to Botox, although allergic reactions have not been observed. Clients who are pregnant or breast feeding. Clients using certain medications such as quinine or calcium-channel blockers may have increased effect of Botox.

 

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