Risks Associated with Botox

Botox is a brand name for botulinum toxin type A and is a type of purified protein derived from bacteria.  Although the public has become very aware of Botox in the last 10 years, it is not a new drug to the medical community.  In the early 1800’s, the term botulism was first used in Germany, and for well over a century, the purified form of this bacteria has been studied and used successfully.  When injected, Botox relaxes the muscle by blocking the nerve signals sent to it.

Doctors and specialists have used Botox injections for the past 20 years to alleviate migraine headaches, eyelid spasms, excessive armpit sweating, overactive bladder problems, and multiple other neuromuscular conditions.  The success of this drug has been remarkable, and as a result, labs and research teams around the world continue to study it to discover other applications for its use.

Despite the ongoing triumphs that Botox has achieved, potential risks must be examined.  Allergan, the company that manufactures Botox, is very careful to outline all possible side-effects associated with its product on every page of documentation so that all professionals administering injections are informed.  The risks associated with Botox injections can be very serious and even life-threatening, but usually have been caused from over-dosage of the product.

If Botox spreads from the injection site or too much is administered, the central nervous system is affected and can cause problems swallowing and speaking, visual disturbances, or breathing difficulties.  This is why Allergan takes every precaution possible to warn patients and professionals adequately.  Some of the other minor risks are dizziness, itching at the injection site, rashes, and asthma-like symptoms.

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Botox injections are not advised if you are allergic to any of its ingredients, specifically to eggs, as they are used as a base when it is manufactured.  Prior to use, potential users should reveal to their doctors any muscle or nerve conditions, breathing problems, pre-existing medical conditions, and medications they take.  Botox injections are not advised if you are pregnant, as it is not known if the drug can have an adverse effect on the baby.  If a person has diabetes or any neurological disease, there is a risk of urinary retention, which may necessitate the use of a catheter.

Although these side effects sound daunting, the good news is that when Botox is used cosmetically and is administered by a professional Botox expert, the risks are very minor.  Whether you require Botox injections for medical reasons or choose to get a facial cosmetic treatment, it is advisable to seek a certified specialist who has experience and excellent references. Schedule a consultation at Dr. Cory Torgerson’s Facial Cosmetic Center to learn about why Botox may be the right choice for you!

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