Dangers and risks of Botox treatments


There is a heated debate in the media about the dangers of Botox treatments with the neurotoxin botulinum toxin. Negative reports of experiences spread quickly in forums on the Internet and remain persistently in the memory. – But what is often not considered is that it is not the active ingredient alone that causes unwanted side effects, but rather its improper use. Therefore, the following article aims to dispel the most common myths. You will also be informed about all the things that need to be taken into account during Botox treatment.

Is Botox really a poison?

Botulinum toxin is a toxin produced by bacteria (Chlostridia) produced under anaerobic conditions, natural Protein. Seven different types of the toxin, from A to F, have been discovered so far. The substance is isolated in pure form and produced as a drug by various pharmaceutical companies. It is not comparable to a snake venom, a chemical warfare agent, or an insect venom – it is a natural, toxic bacterial protein that can be found in minute quantities even in garden soil. How botulinum toxin works ultimately depends on dosage, purity, manufacturing and many other components.

Botox works by not “toxic in the classical sense – it causes muscles to go limp for a certain time. This happens when the substance injected into the muscle blocks the release of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at the end of the nerve. This substance is responsible, among other things, for the transmission of excitation between nerves and muscles. For decades, the healing effect has been researched for various areas of human health.

What is the risk of poisoning with Botox?

Botulinum toxin is a substance that breaks down very quickly outside the body. One to three hours of sunlight alone destroys the neurotoxin. But heating at 85 degrees Celsius for five minutes or chlorinated water can also decompose the “poison.

Therefore, food poisoning with Botox is very rare. It is undeniable that if vital muscles are blocked by the agent, one can die. The lethal dose for the Neurotoxin A is 0.001 µg/kg. This may be a tiny amount, but considering that the active ingredient is only used in very strong dilutions, it would take thirty to forty ampoules for lethal poisoning to occur. Scientists therefore speak of a large “therapeutic window.” This means that the effective amount of the drug is many times less than its lethal amount.

To be able to show you a comparison: If a diabetic injects himself with double the amount of insulin, it can sometimes be fatal. However, if a doctor injects you with twice the amount of Botox, it is in no way dangerous to your health. Botox has been used for decades and to date there has not been a single death. Long-term side effects are also not known so far, despite thirty years of use.

What are possible short-term side effects?

Side effects are possible, but occur very rarely. As a rule, the following applies Overdosage or unprofessional use undesirable results may occur. Transient headache may occur in less than ten percent of patients treated in the upper face. This may last for several days in some circumstances. If such a reaction occurs, it is advisable to use a different botulinum toxin preparation in the next session or to reduce the dosage.

Even fewer patients report flu-like symptoms in the evening after treatment. This reaction is due to a component of the active substance, but can also be minimized by changing the preparation. Blue spots, so-called hematomas, can occur due to injury to small blood vessels by the injection cannula, but are also very rare.

Botox Munich

You can find out about other possible side effects of Botox treatment in Munich in detail under the service descriptions for Botox treatments here on the site or in a personal consultation with Dr. Bernard in Munich.

What is the likelihood of a drooping upper eyelid?

You may have done some research and come across on the internet that some patients report drooping and sagging upper eyelids after Botox treatments.

To this it should be said: The risk of this side effect is low. Such a side effect occurred in only 0.5% of those treated. A previous eyelid lift or overdose of Botox may be favorable for this.

To be distinguished from this is the drooping of the eyebrows due to relaxation of the forehead muscle. The effect of “heavy eyelids” can occur if the practitioner does not have sufficient knowledge about the correct dosage and possible side effects. Especially if there is already a lot of sagging skin around the eyes, the risk of lowered eyelids is particularly high. This side effect can, however, be reduced by treatment with Botox – but it cannot be ruled out one hundred percent.

What is behind the term “overbotoxed”?

To describe “overtreated” faces, the term “overbotoxed” is often used. It expresses that the facial expression unnatural and stiff looks unnatural and stiff. This can be observed more frequently, especially in prominent patients who resort to high doses in order to achieve the longest possible lasting effect, and a “mask face” develops.

However, when used correctly and gently by experienced specialists such as Dr. Bernard, this risk does not exist, so that the naturalness of facial expressions is preserved. Caution should be exercised with so-called botox parties, flat rate offers, treatments by the hairdresser or cosmetician in the back room or cheap offers. Only let yourself be treated by a qualified doctor in order to avoid unwanted surprises. Then you can look forward to your new, fresh appearance without any worries.