When we frown for any reason, we gather the tissue between our eyebrows into a fold. In some of us, this causes a chronic furrow. This produces a frustrated, discouraged, angry look on our face. This can be distractin to others, and a bother to ourselves.
What is BOTOX®?
BOTOX® is the trade name of Botulinum Toxin Type A, a purified substance produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. In large amounts, this substance blocks the nerve impulses to muscles, causing a form of paralysis called botulism. By using extremely small doses of BOTOX®, injected directly into a specific muscle, only the action of that muscle will be paralyzed. Therefore, the problem that muscle causes, like a twitch, spasm or frown line will be stopped.
Where is BOTOX® Placed?
The frown lines between the eyebrows are caused by the action of a muscle called the corrugator. You can feel this as a thickening just below the inside of your eyebrows, when you purposefully make yourself frown. Injection BOTOX® directly into the corrugator muscle stops your ability to draw your eyebrows together when you frown. Once the muscle is paralyzed, it cannot contract, and the frown line gradually fade away.
Will It Last?
The actual treatment takes only a few minutes and the BOTOX® takes effect in three to four days. Gradually, over three to five months, the BOTOX® will fade and the muscle action will return. When the frown line starts to reappear, a simple repeat treatment is all that is necessary to maintain the desired result.
Can BOTOX® Be Used For Other Wrinkles?
BOTOX® is also effective in the treatment of crow's feet and forehead wrinkles. Additionally, it is useful in treating wrinkles around the mouth and neck folds.
Who Can Perform BOTOX® Treatments?
This therapy should be done only by a physician trained in the use of BOTOX®.
How Has BOTOX® Been Tested?
BOTOX® has been used since 1980 for the treatment of strabismus (lazy eye), blepharospasm (uncontrolled eye blinking), and facial spasm. BOTOX® was first used for cosmetic conditions such as forehead wrinkles in 1989.
The side effects of BOTOX® are related to the local injection of the solution. There will be a slight discomfort from the needle entering the skin, and a small chance of a bruise at the site of the injection. There are no reports of damage to the eye. There have been no permanent side effects from the use of BOTOX®. Approximately 1% of patients will develop a slight lowering of ptosis of one eyelid. This is temporary, and may not even be noticeable.
Role of Your Ophthalmic and Facial Plastic Surgeon
Certainly, the physician most qualified to work around your eyes is your ophthalmic and facial plastic surgeon whom you have known and trusted to do other surgeries and procedures. We are completely familiar with the delicate tissue and anatomy surrounding the eyes and face. We will be more than happy to answer any of your questions about your special needs, and about this remarkable procedure.
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION - VISIT AMERICAN SOCIETY OF OPHTHALMIC PLASTIC & RECONSTRUCTIVE SURGERY