Botox is the abbreviated term for Botulinum Toxin,aneurotoxinthat is produced by thebacteriumClostridium Botulinum.In the 1820’s, Dr. Justinus Kerner discovered the bacterium in contaminated meat products. Some fifty years later Dr. John Müller named the bacterium Botulism after Kerner’s earlier description of the Botulinum Toxin as “wurstgift” i.e. “sausage poison.” The Latin word for sausage is botulus hence the term Botulism. Professor Emile van Ermengem would later identify the bacterium that produced the neurotoxin. In the early twentieth century, P. T. Snipe and Dr. Hermann Sommer were the first to purify the toxin, and some years later Dr. Vernon Brooks discovered that the toxin blocks neuromuscular transmission. Dr. Alan Scott and Dr. Edward Schantz would work on a standardized Botulinum Toxin preparation in the 1960s so that it could have a therapeutic application.

In December 1989, Botulinium Toxin (Botox) Type A was approved by the US FDA (Food and Drugs Administration) in treating neurological disorders such as strabismus, blepharospasm and hemifacial spasm for patients over twelve years old,and in December 2000,Botulinium Toxin Type B received FDA approvalto treat cervical dystonia, a neurological movement disorder causing severe neck and shoulder contractions. On April 15th 2002, the FDA announced the approval of Botox-A to temporarily improve appearance andto remove moderate to severe wrinkles, forehead lines, “crow’s feet”, especially glabellar lines (frown lines), and facial lines. It was also approved for the treatment ofaxillary hyperhidrosis (sweating of the armpits) in cases when antiperspirants failed.

Botox-A is a form of sterile, purified Botulinum Toxin. Small doses of the toxin are injected into the affected muscles and block the release of the chemical acetylcholine that would otherwise signal the muscle to contract. These frown lines come from muscles called corrugator and procerus muscles. Once the muscles are at rest, the skin becomes smoother, creating a more natural and relaxed appearance. When injected into the muscles around the eyes, those muscles can not “scrunch up” and are paralyzed.Acceptance of Botox-A in treating such disorders as spasticity and muscle pain disorders is growing. Many European countries are considering aprroval of such treatments. There are also ongoing studies on prostatic symptoms, obesity, asthma, headaches, and migraines.Dermatologists were almost exclusively the earliest providers of the Botox treatment and used it to treat or prevent skin problems. Only later would plastic surgeons also look to apply the treatment which costs around £200.

Results are usually evident within 3 to 7 days, and the effects last up to 4 months. After around this time, the muscles will work as before, meaning that you would be in need of another treatment. Repeated treatments result in a thinning of the muscles, producing a longer lasting effect. The treatment is usually applied to ages 18 to 65.The procedure takes about 10 minutes, and because the procedure is non surgical there is no recovery time needed.A very tiny needle is used for the procedure to which very few patients report discomfort. Possible side effects are extremely rare but can last as long as six months these side effects are headaches, flu-like symptoms, temporary eyelid droop, nausea, squint and/or double vision, twitching of the eye, facial pain, redness at the injection site, and muscle weakness. Botox treatments should not be given to an area where an infection is already present, if you are allergic to any of the ingredients, if you are pregnant or think you might be, or if you have a neurological disorder unless the Botox treatment is specifically used to treat the disorder rather than for a cosmetic use.

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