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What is Botulinum toxin treatment and how does it work? Is that the same as Botox?

Updated: Aug 24, 2023

a woman pushing up her eyebrows and wrinkling her forehead.
Botox (anti-wrinkle injections)

Treatment with Botulinum toxin famously referred to as Botox, was originally developed to tackle medical conditions such as spasticity, ticks and dystonia. The cosmetic use of Botulinum toxin started in the 1980's and became an incredibly popular treatment in the 90's and to this date has stayed as of the most popular non-surgical treatments in aesthetic medicine.

What areas can be treated?

These injections sometimes referred to as Anti-Wrinkle treatments for cosmetic purposes are used to effectively improve lines and wrinkles on many areas of the face and body. Areas that can be treated include:

- Frown lines (aka elevenses),

- Forehead lines,

- Crows feet (around eyes),

- Bunny lines (on the nose),

- Smokers line or bar-code lines,

- Gummy smile,

- Lip flip,

- Sad or down turned smile,

- Excessive sweating (armpits, scalp, feet, hands),

- Neck lift.

​​Who is not a good candidate for Botulinum treatment?

Before you have a treatment a full face to face consultation will be carried out by your prescriber and that will include exploring your medical history.

Anyone who is pregnant or breast feeding or has certain medical conditions is excluded from treatment. The consultation is a legal requirement and designed to ensure safe use of this prescription only medication.

How long before I see any results?

If you've never had this treatment before, it can take up to a week to see any changes in your apperance. Once the treatment fully kicks in which can take up to 2 weeks, the small doses of the toxin temporarily reduce muscle activity and stops the formation of new lines as well as softening the lines that have formed already. This gives a softer, more relaxed appearance.

How long will my results last?

this is a very individual based question. The effects of Botulinum toxin injections last anywhere from 8-16 weeks depending on the area treated and individual person's metabolism and lifestyle. Manufacturers advise treatment shouldn't be repeated sooner than 90 days.

Who makes the Botulinum toxin?

Botulinum toxin A is manufactured under many trade names including; Botox, Bocouture, Dysport, Latybo and Azzalure. These are licensed products in the UK and require a prescription to be supplied.

In my clinic we use Bocouture (Merz Pharma) and we also use Azzalure (Galderma). at patients request we can also administer other brands including Botox.

Botulinum Toxins are prescription ONLY medications and should only be used by authorised, trained medical professionals.

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