What Is Botox?

Monday, 27 Dec 2010 11:30 AM

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Most people evaluate the option of Botox® at some point or other but are frightened by it. But today, to reclaim one’s looks, there are a variety of options to choose from - cosmetic surgery, Botox, and Botox creams. The choice depends on the treatment costs, the side effects, and longevity.
 
Botox was initially introduced for treating optic muscle disorders by ophthalmologists in the late 1980s. It was after the approval from the FDA in 2002 that it started being used by millions of patients to get rid of nagging facial lines and wrinkles.
 
The Botox brand, owned by the pharma giant Allergan, is considered to be synonymous with the botulinum toxin. The toxin, originally dubbed as “sausage poison,” is today widely used in medicine and cosmetics for purposes that range from treating wrinkles on the face to curing uncontrolled blinking. The Botox injection is a diluted version of the bacterial toxin that causes botulism (botulinum toxin A from the bacteria Clostridium botulinum), which has been found to be effective in smoothing wrinkles.
 
Allergan has played an important role in growing Botox applications in cosmetic therapy. In 2002, Allergan obtained FDA approval for the use of Botox in the treatment of facial wrinkles, opening doors for Botox in beauty therapy. Usually, Botox is injected into the selected area to induce temporary weakening or paralysis of muscles or blocking of nerves. The effects of Botox wear off after every four months, requiring a repetition to preserve the effect.
 
In Botox treatment, success is defined by the selection of injection points, and wrong selection can change facial expression. The immediate side effects of Botox range from pain at the site where injected, nausea, headache, upset stomach, and flu-like symptoms. The other side effects of Botox observed among users include frozen expressions or drooping eyelids. In rare cases, if the toxin travels beyond site of the injection, it can trigger life-threatening botulism.
 
The euphoria of Botox in cosmetic therapy has gorwn to include facial creams.The Botox cream similarly promises to rid facial wrinkles. As it is externally applied, one is not exposed to the potential side effects of Botox injection. Containing acetyl hexapeptide-3, a molecule that facilitates the fading of fine lines, the Botox cream offers the ability to combine with other active ingredients that enhance youthfulness of the face.

In terms of cost, the average Botox treatment ranges from $120 to $400 for each injected area, while the Botox cream is available at a fraction of that cost.

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