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Is Botox Dangerous?



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Considering Botox?

Botox is a neurotoxin that was approved by the FDA in 2002 for cosmetic use. The purified form of botulinum is most commonly injected into the patient’s facial muscles to relax the muscles and reduce wrinkles. The result is a more youthful appearance. It is also used for the treatment of incontinence, muscle stiffness, severe underarm sweating, and to prevent chronic migraines. But as with any medical or cosmetic procedure, there are plenty of risks that must be considered beforehand.

Common Short Term Side Effects

Side effects following Botox injections are to be expected. As long as these side effects are temporary, you should not be concerned. Common short term side effects include, but are not limited to:

  • Bruising and/or numbness at the injection site
  • Dizziness
  • Rash
  • Lack of energy
  • Muscle spasms
  • Stiffness

Some patients receive Botox injections around the eye to relieve wrinkles in that area. Some common side effects of this specific injection site include:

  • Slight inflammation of the eye
  • Slight difficulty to completely close the eyelid
  • Excess tear production
  • Drooping eyelid and/or eyebrow
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Dry eyes

Serious Side Effects

It is possible for less common, more serious side effects to occur when receiving Botox injections. If any of the following occur, you should contact your dermatologist immediately.

  • Severe inflammation of the eye
  • Eversion (turning out) of the eyelid
  • Inversion (turning in) of the eyelid
  • Blurry or double vision
  • Facial drooping and/or weakness
  • Eyelid swelling
  • Ulcers on the eye
  • Glaucoma
  • Respiratory problems
  • Difficulty swallowing and/or talking

Precautionary Measures

There are a few steps patients can take to ensure the Botox injection will go as smoothly as possible. Firstly, do some research. It is imperative that potential patients learn about pre-procedure care, the length of the procedure, and post-procedure care. The more a patient understands about the procedure the better. Patients should also inquire about the various dosage options. Secondly, make sure the procedure is done by a qualified professional. Although any healthcare professional can administer Botox injections, it’s advisable to have a physician who is well-practiced in Botox injections, such as a cosmetic dermatologist or plastic surgeon. It is extremely important that patients check the credentials and make sure the chosen physician is certified. If an assistant or nurse performs the injections it is crucial that a doctor is supervising the procedure throughout the entire process.