Information for patients: Botox at-a-glance
Botox is used to improve the look of mild to severe frown lines for a
What is Botox?
- Botox comes from a kind of bacteria. The bacteria can make you very
sick. But doctors have found that the chemical in Botox can also help
treat some health problems. They have been using it safely for many years.
How does Botox work?
- Some wrinkles are caused when a muscle contracts (tightens up). Botox
is injected through the skin into the muscle with a needle. The Botox
keeps the muscle from contracting. When the muscle can't contract, the wrinkle
doesn't show as much.
You mean you can't move your muscles?
- A trained doctor will inject small amounts of Botox into a small
part of the muscle. Only that muscle can't move.
What happens over the long term?
- The action of Botox lessens with time. So the muscle returns to normal
within a few months. You begin to see the wrinkle again.
How was this found?
- Botox was approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) over
10 years ago to treat certain diseases of the eye muscle. Doctors noticed
that some wrinkles around the eyes looked better, too. The company that makes
Botox tested it. They showed the FDA that Botox worked and was
safe for treating certain types of wrinkles.
Are there any side effects? Yes.
- Side effects may include:
- Droopy eyelids, which can last for a few weeks
- Flu-like symptoms
- Headache and nausea (upset stomach)
(REMEMBER: Botox is a drug, not a cosmetic.)
Are Botox Parties Safe?
Botox is approved for selling in single-use tubes. Each tube is made
to be used only once and only for one patient. Using the tube more than once
can spread germs. Treating more than one person with one tube goes against
the product directions. Also, Botox needs to be used within 4 hours
after the tube is opened.
What should I do if I want to try Botox?
- Make sure you get treatment in a doctor's office or hospital. Make sure
your doctor is trained and "takes time to care."
Thinking about Botox?
- Be sure that a skilled doctor does the treatment.
- Make sure the doctor is trained in cosmetic skin surgery of the face.
- Ask about the benefits and risks of the treatment.
- Choose a medical setting where everything is kept clean and germ-free.
- Emergency equipment should be on hand in case of a problem.
- Do not drink alcohol and do not lie down for several hours after the treatment.
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