What is Botox?
Botox Cosmetic (onaboutlinumtoxinA) is an injectable prescription medication that is used to reduce the appearance of moderate to severe from lines between the eyebrows, otherwise known as the glabellar lines in people 18-65 years of age. Botox contains a purified protein and 2 inactive ingredients. It is considered to be a biologic product and is unique and that is why there is no generic form.
Who is Botox For?
Only an individual can decide if they are ready to receive a treatment of Botox Cosmetic. Once a patient has decided they would like treatment their physician or provider can determine whether Botox Cosmetic is right for them.
Who should NOT receive Botox?
If you are allergic to any of the ingredients in Botox or have had an allergic reaction to any of the botulinum toxins like Myobloc (rimabotulinumtoxinB), Xeomin (incobotulinumtoxinA) or Disport (abobotulinumtoxinA). If you have an infection at the site of injection, then Botox is not right for you. You should alert your provider if you have had Botox injected for therapeutic reasons. For example, if you have had Botox Cosmetic for hyperhidrosis as this may make your treatment less effective.
Make sure you tell your doctor or provider about all your muscle or nerve conditions, such as myasthenia graves, Easton-Lambert syndrome, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease) as you my be at risk of serious side effects including dysphagia (difficulty swallowing) and (difficulty breathing).
You should tell your provider if you have plans to have surgery, had surgery on you face, weakness of forehead muscles, such as trouble raising your eyebrows, drooping eyelids, any other abnormal facial changes, planning to become pregnant or are pregnant (whether or not your unborn baby will be harmed by Botox Cosmetic is unknown) or plan to breast-feed (again it is not known whether the Botox Cosmetic will pass into breast milk)
Make sure your provider knows about all prescription and nonprescription medicines, herbal products, and vitamins you may be taking. Also, tell your provider if you have recently taken antibiotics by injection, take allergy or cold medicine, muscle relaxants, or sleep medicine.
How is the treatment performed?
Botox Cosmetic is relatively short procedure typically only taking 10 minutes to perform with little to no downtime. Immediately after treatment you may notice some minor swelling and redness that typically resolves quickly.
With a few small injections, Botox works by blocking the nerve transmission to the muscles in your forehead, called the corrugated and procures muscles, reducing their movement. Within 24-48 hours you may notice improvement in the treated area but typically the results take 3-7 days and peak in 2 weeks. Results have been reported up to 4 months but typically about 3 months. Not all patients will have the same length of treatment results and do vary from patient to patient.
What are the possible side effects of Botox?
Possible side effects include rash, red itchy welts, itching, wheezing, asthma symptoms, or dizziness or feeling faint. Serious and/or immediate allergic reactions have been reported. Spread of the toxin can cause serious symptoms including: loss of strength and all-over muscle weakness, hoarseness or change of loss of voice, trouble saying words clearly, difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing or loss of bladder control. If you have any of these side effects tell your provider immediately. Do not operate machinery, drive a car or do other potentially dangerous activities.
Other side effects such as dry mouth, headache, neck pain, discomfort at the site of injection and eye problems such as blurred vision, decreased eyesight, drooping eyelids, double vision, swelling of your eyelids, and dry eyes.