All about Botox (Vistabel/Dysport)
Botox or Vistabel/Dysport as the product is also called is an injection product consisting of a muscle relaxant solution which is injected into the muscles under the skin. Therefore, Botox blocks the nerve impulses to the areas that have been injected.
Treatment with Botox is many times a very effective method for minimising tension related wrinkles in the face.
Botox is particularly good for treating wrinkles between the eyes (frown lines), the horizontal wrinkles on the forehead, wrinkles on the side of the eyes (crows feet) around the mouth or the chin/neck area.
On this page you find all you need to know about Botox:
- What is Botox? How it works and what results you can expect
- If you are a suitable candidate for Botox treatment and the procedure
- What the Botox after cycle is felt and what risks are involved
- Discussion forum and directory of clinics that perform treatments with Botox
- The opportunity to ask questions directly to a Botox specialist
- Before and after photos of patients that have undergone Botox treatment »
Botox – how and why it works
Every time we smile, frown or gaze with our eyes the underlying facial musculature is tensed which causes wrinkles and lines in the face. As a result of increased age or hereditary disposition these expression lines can remain and be visible even once the facial expression has passed.
Tension related facial lines can make us look older than we feel and in some cases cause us to look worried, tired or sad even if we do not feel this way. Botox is an effective way to counteract this.
What is Botox?
Botox is a muscle relaxant solution produced from Botulinum toxin A, a refined protein manufactured from Botulism bacteria. The substance has been used for medical purposes since the 50’s and was developed to treat over activity in the muscle around the eye, for instance for uncontrolled blinking.
Since it soon became apparent that Botox could block the nerve impulses that are sent to the muscles that control the facial expressions, it soon became a very popular product for treating signs of age such as tension wrinkles in the face. Today injection treatments with Botox are the most common doctor administered treatments in the world.
How does Botox work?
Botox works by limiting the nerve signals to chosen parts of the facial musculature so that they are not tensed and cause wrinkles in that area. After treatment you skin becomes substantially smoother and wrinkles are minimised. The muscles that aren’t treated continue to work as usual.
A common misunderstanding is that Botox completely paralyses the musculature of the face in an unnatural way, but this is not the case. The doctor/nurse aims to limit the habitual and unconscious tension expressions without limiting your way of expressing yourself. A correctly performed treatment should not be noticed other than you looking more rested and vigorous.
Botox´s limiting affect of the nerve signals also gives the substance great success when used for treating migraine related headaches and sweating of the hands and under the arms.
Are you a suitable candidate for Botox treatment?
The most suitable candidate for a Botox treatment is a man or woman with facial wrinkles caused be tension in the underlying facial musculature.
Botox is especially effective for treating the vertical wrinkles between the eyebrows which arise from wrinkling the forehead (frown lines/glabella wrinkles), wrinkles at the outer corner of the eyes (crows feet) as well as horizontal wrinkles that arise when one creases the forehead.
Botox doesn’t work for treatment of wrinkles or lines that are caused by the facial skin loosing volume, elasticity, become slackened or due to sun exposure. These conditions are instead treated with other methods. You can read more about these on the information page about wrinkles and wrinkle treatments ».
You should not use Botox if you are hypersensitive to Botulism toxin, suffer from certain muscle diseases, use aminoglycoside antibiotics, spectinomycin or other medications that affect the nerve signals to the muscles. Botox should not be used during pregnancy or while breast feeding. If you have an infection in the planned injection area then the treatment should be postponed until it has healed.
The procedure for Botox treatment
A Botox treatment is a quick, simple, painless and safe procedure. It doesn’t take more than 10-20 minutes.
By using a micro needle small amounts of Botox are injected into the areas of treatment. Since the needle is thin and only very small amounts of liquid is injected the discomfort is minimal. Many patients compare the discomfort with a mosquito bite.
Anaesthesia is not necessary unless the patient wants it and it is possible to return to normal activities immediatly after the procedure.
Note that the results of Botox treatment is dependent on the exact amount of the active substance being injected into exactly the right place. The underlying facial musculature is a complicated anatomical map which puts high demands on the treating doctors’ competence and experience of using the product. Therefore make sure that you are treated by an authorised doctor or nurse with documented experience of giving Botox injections.
Results are visible within a few days
The results of your Botox treatment begin to show after 3-10 days. When treating certain areas it can take up to 14 days. Normally the achieved result of a specific treatment lasts for 3-4 months. Thereafter the treatment should be repeated and for each repeat the duration tends to last longer.
Potential risks and complications associated with Botox treatments
Side effects and complications due to Botox treatments are very rare and when they do occur they are generally rather simple.
The most common side effect is that bruising and swelling occurs where the injection was placed. Therefore we advice against taking medications containing acetylsalicylic acid (Magnecyl etc.) or other anti coagulants the days before the procedure.
In some unusual cases the substance can spread and numb other muscles than those that were meant to be treated. This can lead to sagging eyelids or asymmetrical facial features.
Allergic reaction to the substance occurs in rare cases.
How great the risk for complications are depends on what muscle is treated. Since the effect of Botox is only temporary, the same goes for the side effects. Normally the side effects are gone within a few weeks.
Some patients experience a temporary headache after the procedure.
The cost of Botox treatment
The price for a treatment with Botox is approximately £100 – £300 per area. The most common areas are frown lines between the eyes, horizontal forehead creases, wrinkles on the outer edge of the eyes and laugh lines.
If more than one area is treated at the same time the price is approximately £300 for the first area and thereafter about £150 for additional areas.