What is BOTOX®?
Botulinum toxin is a neuromodulator produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. It is used medically to treat certain muscular conditions and cosmetically to remove wrinkles by temporarily paralyzing muscles.
The vertical lines between the eyebrows are the direct result of the repeated muscular action of the corrugator and procerus muscles. After many years of squinting, frowning and sun exposure, the skin is left with deep vertical lines that persist even when the face is at rest.
When injected with expertise, BOTOX® immobilizes the muscles for several weeks, smoothing the face as well as lifting the brow. There has never been a non-surgical solution to facial wrinkles as effective as BOTOX®. Conventional surgery involves a large incision, raising the hairline and cutting the muscles. Newer endoscopic surgical techniques avoid the large incisions, but still involve prolonged healing and the expense of major surgery. Collagen injections can fill some of the wrinkles, but as long as the underlying muscles continue to move, the fold will quickly reappear. Both surgery and collagen injections carry their own unique risks as well.
This treatment is the only FDA-approved injection to treat moderate-to-severe frown lines between the brows and moderate-to-severe crow’s feet in adults. Horizontal forehead lines, muscle bands of the neck (“turkey” neck or “string” neck), lines under the eyes, and lateral eyebrows can be treated as well. It can be used in other places on the face; however, this use is off-label and should be discussed with one of our experienced providers at your consultation.
Learn More About BOTOX® Cosmetic
What Are The Risks?
Although no medical or cosmetic procedure is without risk, treatment with neuromodulators is safe and effective. The most common risk, aside from bruising and pinpoint bleeding, is weakening of the muscle fibers that help raise the upper eyelid. Fortunately, this is a rare occurrence, which experienced injectors and eye drops can reverse quickly. It may even resolve itself in a few weeks.
Infrequently, a headache lasting a couple of days has been reported.
Am I A Good Candidate?
Despite being called a toxin, BOTOX® is very well tolerated by most patients who are concerned about moderate-to-severe forehead wrinkles, brow furrows, and crow’s feet. You should not consider BOTOX® if you’re allergic to the ingredients, have an infection at the injection site, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or have specific muscle or nerve conditions. A Levy Dermatology expert can determine if BOTOX® is right for you.
What Is Botox® Treatment Like?
BOTOX® injections are no more painful than typical injections with a very small gauge needle. Minimal bruising may occur at the injection sites, but usually, there are no signs you’ve had a treatment, even within an hour or so of the injections. Makeup may be used directly after treatment, but care should be taken not to press or massage the area for several hours after injection. Avoid heavy physical exercise for several hours after treatment.
When Will I See Results?
It generally takes about two weeks for the full effect of BOTOX® to peak. There is no change in sensation in the skin, only the ability to wrinkle the brows.
At Levy Dermatology, we find BOTOX® treatment is effective for 3-8 months. Without re-treatment, the body will naturally restore full muscle action, resulting in lines and wrinkles returning. To learn more about BOTOX in our office, give us a call at (901) 624-3333.