In recent years Botox injections have become one of the most common non-surgical cosmetic procedures performed in North America for the treatment of signs of ageing and to slow the normal consequences of ageing. Simply put, Botox injections relax the muscles that create wrinkles. The result is a lessening of the appearance of frown lines, laugh lines, crow’s feet and forehead wrinkles – some of the most common treatment areas.
A protein toxin produced by the clostridium botulinum bacteria, Botox temporarily eliminates the facial wrinkles that occur with overuse of facial muscles. A small amount is injected right into the muscles that are responsible for creating the wrinkles. The Botox then effectively “inactivates” the muscles that produce wrinkles, thereby causing lines to disappear or diminish dramatically.
After a few tiny needles you can reduce wrinkles in a few days. Results last 3-6 months
Treatment is quick and results usually last from three to six months at which time you may return for a follow-up injection. Some doctors report that after several treatments, the effect of Botaox appears to last longer. Botox is used in extremely small amounts and does not spread throughout the body so you can return to full activity immediately after treatment.
The most common complication reported is a slight, temporary drooping of the eyelid. Botox can be used by almost anyone although patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding or who have a neurological disease should not use Botox.
What is Botox?
Botulinum Toxin is produced by the bacteria Clostridum botulinum. It is a neurotoxin – a toxin blocking nervous conduction – causing a disease called botulism (in very large quantities). Botulism is caused by the ingestion of rotten food where the proliferation of the bacteria has led to the formation of Botulinum Toxin in great quantities.
What are the various types of Botulinum Toxin?
There are several types of Botulinum toxins (A, B, C, E, F). The Botulinum Toxin used in cosmetic use is the Type A Botulinum or BTX-A. Botulinum Toxin of type A is marketed under the name of Botox®, a product of Allergan laboratory.
How does Botulinum Toxin work?
The Botulinum Toxin blocks the nerve impulse between the nerve and the muscle. In fact, the nerve fabricates and carries a chemical substance (acetylcholine) which makes it possible for the muscle to contract. The Botulinum Toxin prevents release of acetylcholine and, thus, muscle contraction.
What is Botulinum Toxin used for?
The medical potential of Botulinum Toxin was first identified in the 1980’s for the treatment of a multitude of eye problems. It was also used in Neurology for spastic muscles and ENT Head and Neck Surgery for diseases of the larynx. It started being used in dermatology and facial plastic surgery in the 1990’s to treat frown lines. Botox® is now recognized as an effective and safe treatment of so-called expression lines (frown lines, crow’s feet and face lines) and excess perspiration or hyperhidrosis.
Dr. Philip Solomon, M.D., F.R.C.S.(C) completed his medical school training at the University of Toronto and is Board Certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dr. Solomon runs his own Toronto practice and is on surgical staff at York Central, St Michael’s and Etobicoke General Hospitals. He is also on the teaching faculty of the University of Toronto.