Botox® is such a household name at this point, that we rarely get the question anymore.
However, for those wanting more information, we thought we’d share all the details. People new to Botox® sometimes ask if Botox® is dangerous considering its close association to botulism. The very simple and resounding answer is NO.
Dangerous botulism is almost always the food-borne variety that comes from eating food from contaminated cans, especially home-canned foods low in acid such as green beans, corn and beets.
Most medical ingredients are toxic when administered in the wrong dose – especially a too large dose. Even the lovely flower purple-foxglove is a poison that is used in a small quantity in the heart medication Digitalis. And common aspirin in the right dose can help prevent and minimize the effects of a heart attack while an overdose can cause fatal bleeding.
So too for Botox® and Dysport®, the difference is the dose…Botox® (and Dysport® for that matter) is a purified protein form of the botulinum toxin. It is used in extremely small quantities and is also purified. With more than six million(!) Botox® treatments performed each year, there are very few reported minor side effects (mostly bruising), and almost zero major ones.
In the mid-2000’s several cases of extreme responses and even death caused by botulinum toxin type A were reported. Sadly, these occurred in young children with cerebral palsy who were injected with very large doses of the toxin in their legs in an effort to reduce spasticity. This use of the medication was not FDA-approved and the doctors were experimenting with doses that are unthinkable for cosmetic purposes.
The proof of Botox® and Dysport® safety is in the numbers. Millions and millions of men and women use Botox® and Dysport® to reduce and smooth wrinkles each year, with few even minor side-effects. It could be argued the major “side effect” of a Botox® or Dysport® treatment is feeling awesome because you look and feel younger and refreshed!
*Results may vary from patient to patient