Botulinum Toxin Injections (Botox)

Overview

Wrinkles and frown lines can be caused by the effects of the ageing process on the skin, sun damage, the effects of gravity, as well as by muscle contraction. Frown lines between the eyebrows, forehead lines and crows feet (at the side of the eyes) and some lines around the mouth are due to muscle contraction and can be improved by injections of botulinum toxin (Boxtox) into the muscle to weaken it.

Botox®is one of the trade names for comercially produced Botulinum toxin type A, which comes from bacteria called Clostridium botulinum. Botox works by blocking a chemical called acetylcholine, that is released from nerve endings and is required to cause muscle contraction. The resultant muscle paralysis, however, is temporary, as the growth of new nerve endings will re-innervate the muscles.

During the procedure, Botox is injected directly into the muscles that cause the wrinkles, using a very small needle. Depending on the area to be treated, several injections are usually needed at specific sites. Localised discomfort and bruises can occur, but no sedation or local anaesthesia is generally required.

It is important to note that whilst Botox can be very effective in reducing wrinkles due to muscle contractions, it has no effect in reducing the fine lines on the face caused by sun damage, or the age related lines due to sagging of facial skin.

Frequently asked questions

Am I suitable for botox?

What are the benefits of a botox?

Is the procedure painful?

How long does it take to recover from the injections?

When will I notice the results and how long will they last?

Will I be told the risks and complications?

What follow-up appointments will there be?

Am I suitable for Botox?

Not everyone is suitable for Botox. Suitability is a matter for you and Mr Johnson to discuss in clinic, following a thorough analysis of your medical history and a thorough clinical consultation.

What are the benefits of Botox?

The benefits are to reduce the frown lines on the forehead, between the eyebrows and in the crows feet region at the side of the eyes. This can give the face a smoother, fresher, more youthful appearance and thereby increase patient confidence and improve self esteem.

Is the procedure painful?

Botox injections are not particularly painful. Ice is used to cool the skin down to make the injections more comfortable.

How long does it take to recover from the injections?

Following the injections it is advisable not to lie down for a few hours but otherwise normal activities can be resumed immediately.

When will I notice the results and how long will they last?

It usually takes between 2-3 days for the injections to start to work, with maximum effect at about 1 to 2 weeks. The effects of the treatment last between 6-9 months, at which time repeat injections of Botox can be given.

Will I be told the risks and complications?

Any procedure carries with it the risk of complication. Complications, however, are uncommon following Botox. During your initial consultation Mr Johnson will have a full discussion with you about the risks and complications of this procedure. Fortunately, with correct patient selection and appropriate procedure selection, the risks are kept to an absolute minimum. It is important that you should be reassured that Mr Johnson will not agree to perform any cosmetic procedure on you unless he feels the benefits significantly outweigh the risks.

What follow-up appointments will there be?

Mr Johnson will arrange to see you in clinic 2 weeks after your Botox injections. He will then make arrangements to see you in clinic for longer term follow-up appointment. You will be given contact details for the hospital and Mr Johnson's secretary should you wish at any time to discuss further aspects of your care or make additional arrangements for review.


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