Stuff You Didn’t Know About Botox

BOTOXBotox is probably one of the best-known brand names in the country. Since its debut in the aesthetic world in 2002 — the year the FDA approved Botox for the treatment of facial wrinkles — this injectable has taken the world by storm. Every year since it hit the aesthetic market, it has led the world in procedures, surgical or non-surgical.

But there’s more to Botox than meets the wrinkle. After all, Botox was around for a couple decades for other uses before it was even considered for relaxing the muscles that form wrinkles above them.

The origins of Botox

Clostridium botulinum is the organism from which Botox is derived. Yes, that’s the bacterium that causes botulism in humans. It can be found in its inactive form all through the natural environment, including in cultivated soil and in forest soil, and in the sediment of lakes, streams, coastal, and untreated waters.

Medicinal uses

This may surprise you, but long before anyone had heard of Botox it was being used medicinally. After it was found that the botulinum toxin type A, when injected in very small amounts, could make muscles temporarily stop contracting it was tried in various capacities. It is now used for the following therapeutic applications:

  • Strabismus (crossed eyes)
  • Blepharospasm (involuntary eyelid spasms)
  • Chronic migraine headaches
  • Idiopathic rotational cervical dystonia (severe neck and shoulder muscle spasms)
  • Severe primary axillary hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating)
  • Post-stroke upper limb spasticity
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Overactive bladder
  • Hemifacial spasm

It is also used “off-label” for:

  • Achalasia (esophageal problems creating difficulty swallowing)
  • Sialorrhea (hypersalivation)
  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Hepatopancreatic dysfunction
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Oromandibular dystonia (forceful contraction of the jaw, face, and/or tongue)
  • Laryngeal dystonia (forceful contraction of the vocal cords)

And more

More than six million Botox treatments are given each year, far and away the most of any cosmetic procedure of any type. That’s a lot of muscles being temporarily paralyzed!

Although Botox is by far the most popular brand, the botulinum toxin is also sold commercially under these other brand names: Vistabel, Dysport, Bocouture, Xeomin, and Myobloc.

Is it time for you to do something about your crow’s feet or forehead wrinkles? Call us at Matsuda, 808-949-7568, and set up a Botox appointment.