Is BOTOX® Cosmetic Safe?
Posted July 22, 2020 in BOTOX® Cosmetic
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If you are considering a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on the face, you have probably considered BOTOX® Cosmetic. BOTOX® Cosmetic is the most well-known and commonly used minimally invasive cosmetic treatment. While many people know that it is used to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, not everyone is aware of how it works.
If BOTOX® Cosmetic injections are in your future, there are a few important things to understand about this treatment.
What Is BOTOX® Cosmetic?
BOTOX® Cosmetic is an injectable substance that temporarily prevents the transmission of chemical signals that tells facial muscles to contract. This is why BOTOX® Cosmetic only works to smooth out expression-causing wrinkles, such as those found around the eyes and mouth.
BOTOX® Cosmetic consists of a purified strain of botulinum toxin type A. Botulinum toxin is one of the most dangerous substances on Earth, responsible for the disease of botulism. But before you start worrying about the connection between the two, you should know that there isn’t one. The strain of the toxin used in BOTOX® Cosmetic is different from the bacteria that causes any form of disease.
BOTOX® Cosmetic uses a purified strain in such small amounts that it is nearly impossible to amount to any real problem.
The Howard Hughes Medical Institute Study On BOTOX® Cosmetic
In 2016, this respected institution performed a study in response to concerns about the ability of botulinum toxins to move beyond the initial nerve pathway and spread to other parts of the face or central nervous system.
The study did show the movement of the toxins between neurons in a lab setting, prompting the medical team to look for ways to curb the toxin’s ability to spread. It is unknown how far the toxin spreads, although the amounts injected for cosmetic purposes are minuscule and safe. However, the research team looked for ways to ensure that BOTOX® Cosmetic only stays at the injection site, increasing its safety.
The researchers found that a genetically engineered version of Clostridium bacteria could block the spread of BOTOX® Cosmetic injections, allowing it to remain only in the injected areas. By limiting the spread and improving the localization of the injections, the results can be safer and, for people using them for cosmetic purposes, placed with increased precision.
BOTOX® Cosmetic patients are also told not to massage the area immediately after injection, which can prompt the movement of the toxin.
How Safe Are BOTOX® Cosmetic Treatments?
Although there is an FDA warning about possible side effects of BOTOX® Cosmetic injections, when these are administered by a certified cosmetic surgeon trained in the procedure, the safety risks are notably diminished. It is important to choose a board-certified plastic surgeon, certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons (ABPS) for any cosmetic procedure.