Botox, Botox Cosmetic

Habit forming? No
Prescription needed? Yes
Available as generic? No
Drug class: Neuromuscular blocking agent

Provides temporary improvement in appearance in the frown lines between the eyebrows (glabellar lines).

- May also be used for lines and wrinkles in the forehead, around the eyes, in the lower face area and the neck.

- Treats strabismus (lazy eye) and blepharospasm (uncontrolled eye blinking).

- Treats certain facial nerve disorders and cervical dystonia (neck and shoulder tightness).

- May be used for treatment of other disorders as determined by your doctor (such as headaches, writer's cramp, excessive sweating, tremor, muscle-related disorders, pain and effects of a stroke).

- Research is ongoing for use in treating a variety of medical disorders.

How to take Botox:

- Injection: The medicine is administered by your doctor or a qualified health professional. It is injected into the muscle in or around the area being treated.

When to take Botox:

- As directed by your doctor.

If you forget a dose:

- Injection is done only by scheduled appointment.

What Botox does:

- It paralyzes, weakens or relaxes the injected muscle by blocking the release of a chemical that normally signals the muscle to contract or tighten.

- The effect is temporary and most patients will require repeat treatments.

Time lapse before drug works:

- Improvement may be seen in 1-3 days and last up to 3-6 months.

- The degree of improvement will vary from person to person and will depend on the disorder being treated.

Don't take with:

- Any other medicine or any dietary supplement without consulting your doctor or pharmacist.

SYMPTOMS: Unknown. May possibly cause body weakness.


None expected.

Common Botox Side Effects:

With blepharospasm (dry eyes, eyelid does not close completely).
With blepharospasm or strabismus (eye irritation or watering, eyelid drooping or bruised, light sensitivity).

Infrequent Botox Side Effects:

With blepharospasm or strabismus (blinking decreased, cornea irritation, eyelid edge turns in or out, skin rash, eyelid swelling, vision changes, eye pointing up or down).  With lines/wrinkles (injection site numb, burning or swelling).

Rare Botox Side Effects:

Any problems with speech, breathing or swallowing or heart symptoms occur or allergic reaction occurs. With lines/wrinkles (drooping eyelids, redness or bruising at injection site, facial pain, skin rash or itching, headache, nausea, flu or Cold symptoms). Other side effects or adverse reactions may occur depending on the disorder being treated. Drugs injected into muscles can be absorbed by the body and cause symptoms.

Don't take if:

- You are allergic to botulinum toxin type A.

Before you start, consult your doctor If:

- You have heart problems.

-  You a nerve or muscle disorder, or a problem with swallowing.

- You have inflammation in the muscle area to be treated.

-  You are allergic to any medication, food or other substance.

-  You have a history of infection involving botulism poisoning.

Over age 60:

- No special problems expected.

- Currently, for wrinkle treatment, the drug is approved for people between ages 18 and 65.


- Decide with your doctor if drug benefits justify any possible risk to unborn child.

- Consult doctor if you become pregnant and have had a botulinum injection.


- It is unknown if drug passes into milk.

- Avoid nursing if you use this medicine.

- Consult doctor for advice on maintaining milk supply.

Infants & children:

- Not approved for children under age 12 for strabismus or blepharospasm treatment, or under age 18 for facial lines or wrinkle treatment.

Prolonged use:

- Long term effects are unknown. Discuss with your doctor about long term use.

- Benefits and risks will differ depending on the problem being treated.

- Benefits may decrease with continued use.

- For facial lines and wrinkles, the injections should be at least 3 months apart.

Skin & sunlight:

- No special problems expected.

Driving, piloting or hazardous work:

- Since this medicine may be used for treatment of a variety of disorders (including eye muscle disorders, muscle contraction problems and muscle spasms), always consult your doctor about your individual circumstances.


- Symptoms and signs of the problem being treated will most likely return.


- This treatment is given in a medical office and the risks and benefits will be explained to you.

- The information provided in this topic does not replace the information or special instructions provided by your doctor.

- Patients who have been inactive (sedentary) should resume activities gradually after receiving an injection.

- Advise any doctor or dentist whom you consult (within the few months following the injection) that you have used this medicine.

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