BOTOX® Cosmetic is the first FDA-approved prescription product that temporarily improves the appearance of both moderate to severe frown lines between the brows and moderate to severe crow’s feet in adults. Patients should be aware that only medical personnel with a detailed knowledge of muscular anatomy, and proper training are qualified to inject BOTOX® Cosmetic.
BOTOX® Cosmetic is a naturally derived protein that is purified in a laboratory, and works by preventing muscle contractions. BOTOX® Cosmetic does this by blocking the action of a chemical called Acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter that is released by nerves to cause muscles to contract. BOTOX® Cosmetic is metabolized and completely eliminated by the body, and after approximately 3 months the communication between the nerve and muscle is restored. BOTOX® Cosmetic has been used for medical purposes for over 20 years. It was first used by ophthalmologists and neurologist to treat a variety of conditions, and was safely used at high doses, even in children, before it was discovered that very small doses could be used to eliminate fine lines and wrinkles. BOTOX® Cosmetic was approved for use in treating wrinkles, and for treatment of excessive sweating by Health Canada in 2001. It continues to be used for neurologic conditions, like hemifacial spasm and dystonia, and is also used routinely for other indications, such as in the treatment of migraine and chronic daily headache.
Frown lines above the nose, between the brows
lines around the eyes, Forehead Lines
lines on either side of the nose, typically seen on smiling Brow Lift
lines above the lips
visibility of the gums seen when smiling
visible bands of muscle in the neck
Because the blockade of acetylcholine neuromuscular transmission is completely reversible, there are no long lasting side effects of BOTOX® Cosmetic. However, with repeat injection, the benefits of BOTOX® Cosmetic can be cumulative and more long lasting. Lines and wrinkles form over time because of repetitive folding of overlying skin by contractions of underlying muscles. By preventing repetitive contractions, BOTOX® Cosmetic can actually prevent the formation of new wrinkles. That is why some patients in their 20’s opt for BOTOX® Cosmetic injections, to help preserve their complexion and prevent signs of aging before they occur.
The treatment typically involves 3 to 12 injections, depending on how many areas are treated. The needle used is very small, and the injections are so brief that most patients experience virtually no discomfort. The full benefits of treatment are seen within a few days, to up to 2 weeks after treatment. The effects of BOTOX® Cosmetic typically last 3 to 4 months.