Botox

Botox® is a purified muscle relaxing agent.  Motor nerve endings are areas where nerves connect to muscles.  When the brain sends a signal for muscle contraction, this signal is transmitted to the muscle through the release of a substance called acetylcholine at the motor nerve ending.  Botox blocks the release of acetylcholine, therefore blocking the muscle contraction.

Repeated facial muscle contraction is a contributor to some facial wrinkles, called dynamic wrinkling.  These lines are often found between the eyebrows from frowning, around the eyes from smiling, and on the forehead from raising the eyebrows. Botox® treatment can relax these muscle movements, and thereby smooth out the lines and wrinkles.

What results can I expect?

Botox® injections are administered in the office with small injections into the culprit muscles.  Botox® effect usually appears gradually within 2 to 14 days.  Results usually last between 2 to 6 months.  As muscle movement returns, repeat treatment can be done. To see how a Botox® treatment might look for you, visit the treatment visualizer. To see more before and after photos click here.

 

What can I expect for recovery?

After the injections, patients are asked not to lie down for the next 4 hours, or massage the treatment sites.  It is also recommended that patients continue to contract the treated muscles a few times each hour for the remaining day.

Following the Botox® procedure, minor side effects include possible bruising at the injection sites, and slight discomfort with injection. Rarely, if some Botox® were to relax the muscle which elevates the eyelid, eyelid droop (ptosis) may occur. Usually this droop will diminish after a few weeks. Some patients, after treatment of the forehead, may experience a heaviness of the eyebrows. Your practitioner will evaluate you before the treatment to see if your brows and forehead would be more at risk. Some patients will not respond to the Botox® treatment. Your practitioner will ask you about your medical history prior to treatment. Patients with certain medical conditions, such as Myasthenia Gravis, may not be good treatment candidates.

What risks are involved?

Although extremely unlikely, the FDA requires patients to be informed of the following Botox® risks:  problems with swallowing, speaking, breathing; muscle weakness; loss of bladder control; death.  These risks have not been reported with cosmetic use of Botox. For more detailed information about the safety of Botox® click here.