Botulinum is a toxin that is produced by the bacteria Clostridium botulism. Botulism being Latin for sausage since it was first discovered in 1897 when its toxin was released into ham. It acts by blocking the release of chemical transmitters from nerve ends onto muscle only. In the actual manufacturing of the product, it undergoes multiple purification and stabilization processes to for a crystalline structure.

This results in the temporary paralysis of that muscle. The muscles of the face lie in close proximity to the skin and there when the muscle relaxes, the wrinkles in the skin disappear.

Is it safe?

Botox has been used for more than 30 years in humans and is considered exceptionally safe. It is a highly regulated substance and undergoes stringent testing.

Can I have too much?

The present “on label” indication (see below) for facial aesthetics is 44 Units per treatment session. Of course, more or less may be used depending on patient requirements and preferences. Up to 200 Units may be used for excessive sweating. Toxic doses are in the range of 3500 to 5000 Units. These doses are never needed for cosmetic facial injections.

How long does it last?

It lasts about for about 3-6 months. The actual activity of the toxin only lasts for the few days it takes to disable the function of certain proteins (SNAP-25) on the receptors of the nerve ending. The reason why it takes so long to recover then is because you nerve has to create new SNAP-25 proteins, and transport it all the way from the cell body down to the nerve ending.

For any further questions, please make an appointment with Dr Geoffreys