Muscle relaxing injections have been used for more than a decade in children and adults to treat therapeutic conditions such as involuntary facial muscle spasms and double vision due to eye muscle imbalances.
The use of muscle relaxing injections in Cosmetic Medicine has become widespread over the last 10 years. It is a simple treatment, which is safe and effective. Many facial wrinkles are caused by the action of the underlying muscles of facial expression. Over time these wrinkles become deeper and more ingrained. The appearance of many of these wrinkles can be substantially improved by subtly weakening the responsible muscles. This does not need to result in total freezing of the face and removal of facial expression as untreated muscles continue to function normally. Tiny injections into the muscles improve existing wrinkles and can prevent new ones forming.
When a muscle is injected it begins to weaken in 2-3 days and reaches maximal relaxation at around 14 days. Occasionally refinement treatments are needed at 14 days to further improve the outcome. The degree that the muscle weakens is determined by many factors including the dose and depth of injection. The effect usually lasts around 4 months but can be for a longer or shorter period. The muscle regains normal function after this time.
Re-treatment with further doses is required to maintain muscle weakness. It is advisable to re-treat before the prior dose has entirely worn off. Typical re-treatment interval is 3 months. With repeated injections over a period of time the muscles weaken and often need less frequent treatments.