Botox (Neurotoxin)

Skin Rejuvenation

Botox San Antonio TX | Neurotoxin

What's a neurotoxin?

Neurotoxin injection is the most commonly performed nonsurgical cosmetic procedure in the United States. The popularity of this procedure is due to effectiveness, relatively low cost, risk and recovery time. There are several different brands of neurotoxins available in the US based on the botulinum toxin, with the two most popular brands being Botox and Dysport. When injected within or near a muscle, the toxin will block signals from the nerves to that muscle, thereby preventing the muscle from contracting. The muscle becomes weakened and may temporarily be unable to contract. This prevents the formation of or worsening of skin folds on the face that are created and reinforced by muscles contracting or animation.

Where are the common injection locations for Botox on the face?

The most common injection areas are where muscles of animation contribute to prominent skin wrinkles. This also coincides with the treatment areas where the FDA has approved the use of these medications (on-label uses). These areas include the glabella (area between eyebrows and just above the nose), the forehead, and the outside area of the eyes (the crow's feet). Neurotoxins can also be used in other locations around the face and neck to limit skin wrinkles due to muscle contraction, but are considered "off label" use by the FDA.

Will Botox make the lines on my face go away completely, or forever?

Neurotoxins used today are not able to erase deep, fixed wrinkles of the skin. If the wrinkles in the skin are made worse or more prominent when the underlying muscle contracts, then weakening the muscle should improve the overall appearance of the wrinkle (but will still not erase the resting line). With chronic use, these deep lines may ultimately soften and become less prominent but this is not guaranteed. The best solution to fill these deeper fixed or static grooves is with a filler. Furthermore, Botox does not permanently prevent muscle contraction. The nerves will eventually be able to stimulate the muscle to contract. This is typically within 3-5 months, and will vary based on several factors.

Neurotoxin/Botox FAQ’s

Is Botox painful?

Botox does involve injecting a small amount of fluid underneath the skin with a very small needle. For the vast majority of patients, this is well tolerated, even with an underlying fear of needles.

What are the risks of neurotoxin/Botox injection?

The most common issues are bruising from injection near a blood vessel, discomfort at the injection site immediately after the procedure, and asymmetry of muscle paralysis. Asymmetries are typically treated with touch-up injections several days after the procedure. Bruising is usually limited and will resolve with time (and covered with make-up in the meantime). There are other more significant risks that are exceedingly rare that will be covered with you prior to undergoing the injections.

When will I see my results and how long will the results last?

As the medication takes time to migrate toward the nerve-muscle junction and block the receptors, there is not an immediate effect after injection. Instead, patients will start to see results about 5-10 days after the procedure. This is when asymmetries can be noted and should be treated. The results will typically last between 3-5 months. The variability depends on amount of neurotoxin injected relative to bulk of muscle being blocked, activities and displacement of the product after injection, and your body's tolerance for the medication. That's right! Your body will become more tolerant of the neurotoxin, and it will generally become less effective with chronic treatments. This is a reason that the amount of neurotoxin needed to achieve a particular result may escalate over time. It is also a reason why the specific brand injected may need to be changed in the future (from Botox to Dysport, and vice versa). Dr. Albright will be able to discuss these issues with you whether this is your first time or your a Botox pro!

When can I exercise after Botox / neurotoxin injection?

It is generally recommended to avoid strenuous exercise for about 24 hours after injection in order to prevent the injected medication from being washed out by increased blood flow and to prevent it from being displaced to an area where you do not want muscle paralysis like the eye. Additionally, Dr. Albright recommends avoiding bending movements or head wear (such as a hat or forehead band) for several hours after injection so as to avoid displacing the medication. If this seems confusing, don't worry. You will receive a handout after the procedure that will clearly explain these and other limitations.

I've had my Botox (neurotoxin injection), and now I'm freaking out!?!

RELAX! Don't freak out! Give us a call. Dr. Albright and his staff are here to help. Common concerns after injection are waiting for the Botox to take effect, as there is some variability here. Have patience, it will come.

Others may be bothered by a sensation of a 'heavy' eyebrow. Although troubling, the vast majority of the time this is not true droopiness of the eyebrow or eyelid, and patients will get accustomed to the sensation within a few days. This should be differentiated from a true eyelid droopiness or eyelid ptosis. True eyelid ptosis is when the upper eyelid is unable to move appropriately (because the muscles have become partially paralyzed from the medication displacing down toward the eyelid). This may cause obstruction of your vision, and may require additional medication. If you are concerned about this issue, please call our office.

Finally, asymmetry of results.  This is not too uncommon especially for new Botox patients. The first step is to make sure enough time has passed for the Botox to take full effect. Typically waiting through 7-10 days is an adequate window for this to occur. After this point, the asymmetry is not likely to improve until the Botox effect is gone (3-5 months). If this is you, please don't suffer in silence. Let us know you are having a problem, and Dr. Albright will try to make it right!

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“ I had a very good experience at the practice. All my questions were answered, and I love the result. Dr. Albright was very knowledgeable, proficient, and patient. He took time to answer all of my questions and explain the process and what to expect after the procedure. Staff was very friendly, and I had almost no
wait time. ”
“ I was a first time botox user. I scheduled my appointment with Dr. Albright. He was kind and friendly. He went over my activity limitation and answered all my questions. I had no idea what to expect, I thought it might hurt. But I was wrong, I didn't have any pain! I was very happy with the result. My forehead lines are gone! I feel more confident with my appearance and will be back. I couldn't be happier with the result! ”
“ No More Angry Line Between Brows! - Very happy with my experiences seeing Dr Albright. Easy to schedule appointment, no wait time, friendly staff. I had a huge furrow between my brows and wish I’d gotten Botox sooner now as I’m 40. Dr Albright was great, explained everything thoroughly, was very cautious not to inject any veins in my veiny forehead. He made sure I understood everything along with after care. Highly recommend!”
“ Wonderful experience each time I’ve seen Dr. Albright. Easy to schedule appointments, no wait time, seen right away after brought to the exam room. I was a new Botox user and he explained everything in depth including the procedure, what to expect, discharge instructions and made sure I understood/had no questions. He was more than careful to ensure he wouldn’t inject into any veins on my forehead. Great results, my huge line between my brows is no longer prominent. Definitely recommend! ”
Alamo Plastic Surgery San Antonio TX | Team - Dr. Albright, Franchesca Espinosa, Juli Albright
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