Botulinum Toxin A (Botox & Dysport)

Today we’re going to talk about Botulinum Toxin A, otherwise known as Botox or Dysport.

So what is Botox?  Botox is a plant derived substance that, when injected into the muscles that cause skin wrinkling, will weaken the muscles and prevent the overlying skin from wrinkling.  Botox injections are the most popular procedure in the practice of aesthetic medicine because they work so well!  It takes about 2-3 days after injection for the weakening of the muscle to become noticeable, with the peak effect occurring about 7-14 days after injection.  Depending on how often you use the muscle injected and how quickly you metabolize the Botox, effects can last for anywhere from 3-6 months.

Botox injections are really very safe, and the majority of patients do not experience any complications.  That said, every procedure does involve a certain amount of risk.  So, before you get Botox injections, it is important that you understand the risks involved.

So, what are the possible risks and complications?

Bleeding: As unusual as it is, it is possible to experience localized bleeding at the site(s) of injection during or after the procedure.  If you are worried about bleeding, you can stop taking any aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications for 10 days prior to your appointment.

Bruising: It is not uncommon to have some bruising at the injections site.  The bruising is usually minor, and almost always resolves within 3-4 days.

Infection: Infection is exceptionally unusual and, if it does occur, can easily be treated with antibiotics.

Allergic Reactions: Though exceedingly rare, there have been reports of local allergic reactions to Botox injections.  In addition, it is possible to have a systemic allergic reaction to the aesthetics or skin treatment used before or after the injection.  An allergic reaction would require additional medical treatment.

Drooping of the Eyelid (Ptosis): This is a very rare and very transient complication that can occur after injection.  The risk can be minimized by maintaining correct posture and positioning after treatment.  In the event that a ptosis does occur, it almost always resolves within several weeks.

Unsatisfactory Results: Though we have every confidence that you will be pleased with our work, it is possible that you will be disappointed with the results of the procedure.  In extremely rare cases, the procedure may results in visible deformities, loss of function and/or loss of sensation.  Please keep in mind, even in these very rare and extreme cases, Botox always wears off and none of these results will be permanent.

So is Botox for you?