Botox® is an injectable neuromodulator which blocks the nerve receptors that connect to muscles. When injected in the location of muscles, it temporarily paralyzes them for about 3 months.
Botox® has been utilized for almost 20 years, but the neurotoxin has been studied for longer. It does have both cosmetic and medical indications, but usually in a plastic surgeon’s office it is for cosmetic indications to help with frown lines and crow’s feet.
Botox® can be injected in the brow for a chemical brow lift, and in the male forehead to smooth lines and creases. Other indications for Botox®, include migraine headaches and bothersome sweating (hyperhydrosis).
- Botox® should be injected by an experienced injector who will evaluate your individual goals and incorporate your facial muscle activity and skin lines.
- Botox®needs to be diluted with saline, and this can affect its activity. Be sure to ask what kind of dilution your injector is using.
- The Botox® should be loaded in a 1cc syringe with a 30 gauge needle for injecting. This needle is like that used for a TB test. Repetitive injections can dull the needle, so do not be surprised if an additional needle is used to limit bruising.
- The injection location and depth is very important to deliver the drug to the proper location. This is where an experienced injector with knowledge of the facial anatomy is needed. Botox® can diffuse into other areas, such as the upper eyelid, which can lead to a droopy eyelid. This can be related to injector technique and quantity of Botox® injected.
- Ice packs should be used to limit bruising at the injection site, as well the skin should be cleaned with alcohol swabs prior to any injection.
- The treatment time should be about 5 to 15 minutes and it usually takes 2 to 4 days to take effect.
- Results can be limited to Botox® amount or number of units, look for 30 to 40 units as being average for forehead and eyes.
- Men may need a higher number of units for the forehead, but in general the total number of units for the face is equivalent.
In the right hands and in the right patient, Botox® is safe and effective for early facial aging. 20 to 40 units every three months is a standard routine, and should probably be the equivalent cost of hair and nails for that time.
The most difficult part of the process is finding the right injector who has the experience, knowledge, and technique to deliver reliable and safe results.
- Coupons and deals are enticing, but getting comfortable with an experienced individual injector will pay dividends for your preventative facial aging routine.
See your Botox® doctor back after 2 weeks to check the results and then in 3 months after the injection for another round. This will get your Botox® routine going, and will make follow-ups easy and quick.
Dr. Trussler in Austin Texas has significant experience injecting neuromodulators like Botox®. Dr. Trussler does perform all of his own injections in his Austin Texas plastic surgery office.