Wrinkles are caused by a combination of age, damage caused by the sun and by tobacco, and by excess weight. But, above all, they are the result from repeated muscular contractions in the same place: facial expressions ! Botulinum toxin relaxes the muscles and will contribute to making these wrinkles disappear.
The injections, easy for an experienced doctor, are totally harmless and require no anaesthesia.
No side effects are visible after the injections, which means that your social and professional life can go on without any interruption.
It is not a paralysis, but a simple lack of the muscle strength, which ensures a totally natural result.
Botulinum toxin has been marketed since 1977, for spasms of the eyelids, certain sight problems and spasmodic torticolis.
Millions of people over the entire world have been treated using botulinum toxin, in certain cases of the following affections :
spasms of the eyelids, sight problems, spasmodic torticolis, spasms of the laryngeal muscles, writer’s cramp, trembling and tics, multiple sclerosis, encephalopathy, the condition after certain cerebral haemorrhages, injuries of the spinal marrow, nervous paralysis, facial spasms, problems to swallow, speech impediments, spasms of the urinary bladder, etc…
In 1988, a Vancouver ophthalmologist who injected his patients who suffered from eyelids spasms with botulinum toxin noticed that botulinum toxin made their wrinkles disappear as well.
Her husband, dermatologist Alistair Carruthers MD, did extensive research, which confirmed that botulinum toxin could be very effective to treat aesthetic indications.
Wrinkles in the upper half of the face result from the interaction between the skin and the underlying muscles. These wrinkles appear every time you laugh or frown your eyebrows, and every time that you are angry or lift your eyebrows.
After a certain time, these wrinkles become permanently visible, even in rest. The face appears to be permanently marked.
There is, however, a quick and easy solution to this problem: injections with botulinum toxin.
Botulinum toxin (type A) is a drug derived from the botulism bacteria.
Botulinum toxin does not contain the bacteria, but contains only the toxin. (Contrary to the botulism disease, which is caused by the massive intake of the bacteria, especially in certain cases of food poisoning).
Botulinum toxin blocks the neuro-muscular ends in the part of the body where it has been injected (neuro-muscular ends constitute the link between the muscle and the nerve and allow the muscle to contract).
By blocking the neuro-muscular ends, botulinum toxin brings the muscle in a state of rest, thus reducing its power to contract.
The first results are visible on the second day. The full results become apparent after ten days. They will last for several months and will then gradually disappear between the fourth and the seventh month.
After this period, the treatment can be repeated.
The skin becomes smoother, the faces has a more relaxed appearance. This makes one look younger; the face is certainly less marked.
The normal facial expression does not change because of botulinum toxin remarkable precision. The face’s form does not alter either and the face does not appear stiffened, as is the case with some face-lifts.
Antibiotics based on amino glycosides (injections with Streptomycin , Tobramycin en Garamycin ), penicillamin, quinine and blocks of the calcium channel (Calan , Cardizem , Dilacor , Norvasc , Procardia , Verelan ).
If you are treated with one of these drugs, please mention it.
Here botulinum toxin is used in very small amounts comparatively to other medical specialisations.
It is working by blocking the nervous ends at the contact of the muscles in the areas where it has been injected, and this only temporary.
Outside the action on the muscle, botulinum toxin has no toxic or any other effect on the body.
No side effects are visible after the injections (ecchymoses are very rare, except when taking aspirin the last few days prior to the injections).
Very few side effects have been described : allergic reactions with cutaneous eruptions or itching, arrythmia, and glaucoma (during the treatment of blefarospasm).
Cases of temporarily loss of eyebrows and eyelashes have been reported, but these always occurred when the injections were too close to the eyebrow.
As a precaution : pregnancy, breast-feeding and neuro-muscular diseases (myasthenia).
Strong muscles cause vertical wrinkles between the eyebrows. Repeated frowning one’s eyebrows leads to deep, permanent wrinkles. Inhibiting these hyperactive muscles results in a more serene and relaxed facial expression.
These wrinkles are probably what botulinum toxin has the most effect on. Botulinum toxin makes the skin of the forehead as smooth as it once was.
Laughing causes these. They depart from the outer corners of the eye and can become so pronounced that they loose their likable appearance.
Small doses of botulinum toxin make this disfiguring symptom disappear, while at the same time keeping the smile unaffected.
Botulinum toxin can be used to reduce certain vertical folds in the neck.
Other indications for the lower face part have to be examined case by case: some lines of the nose, of the chin, of the sides of the mouth, etc.