It is a neuro toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. When injected in large quantities, the neuro protein causes paralysis of muscles. When injected in very small amounts into a particular muscle, it causes paralysis of that muscle only. Hence, if it is injected into small groups of muscles which cause frowning and wrinkling, the frown lines and wrinkle lines does disappear.
The toxin (available with your dermatologist) has been purified.
It is to treat:
It is injected serially into a group of muscles which controls frowning and wrinkling, with a very fine needle.
When treating frown lines, the protein is injected into a group of muscles just above the eyebrows. It is also injected into a muscle at the bridge of the nose.
When treating crow’s feet, it is injected serially at several points into the muscles causing the wrinkles at the side of the eyes.
It takes only a few minutes. It is a relatively painless procedure. The patient will experience pain from the needle pricks only.
After the treatment, you are required to remain upright for 1 — 2 hours. During this period, you must try not to strain the muscles that have been injected as much as possible to maximize the effect of the toxin on the muscle. You are advised to not rub the skin or muscles on or around the injected site.
The anti-wrinkling effect occurs within three to four days after the injection. At least by the second week, full relaxation of the wrinkled muscle will take place.
The anti-wrinkling effect of Botulinum Toxin lasts for about 3 – 6 months. There is individual variation where the muscle function gradually returns and wrinkles reappear. When this happens, a repeat treatment is necessary to maintain the desired results.
Botulinum Toxin injection is considered as a relatively safe procedure and the side-effects are uncommon. They are usually related to the injection procedure itself. There may be slight discomfort from the needle prick and there is also a small chance for the development of bruise around the injection site. Slight drooping of the eyelids may occur but this is uncommon and transient. There might be occurrence of Transient headaches. No permanent side-effects from Botulinum Toxin injection have been reported so far.
No. The effects last for 5-6 months.