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Botulinum toxin is a type of neurotoxic protein produced by Clostridium botulinum bacterium. This organism usually thrives in environmental settings like lakes and soil; and can produce 8 different types of botulinum toxin—Type A to Type H. These toxins are dangerous if introduced in large quantities in the human body. That being said, this Type A and B of this toxin can still deliver health benefits to patients suffering from muscle spasms and uncontrollable contractions. The toxin is biotechnologically extracted, purified, and processed into a minute concentration to relax affected muscles.
Skeletal muscles move due to conscious effort of the nervous system and brain. Pouting the lips or flexing the arms happen from contractions of skeletal muscles. This type of muscle moves because of numerous nerve impulses. However, the continuous transmission of nerve impulses can cause persistent contractions and even debilitating spasms. This injectable is then created to block the flow of nerve impulses. Hence, muscles remain relaxed, which can greatly improve the symptoms of incessant muscle contractions.
The exact duration of improvement depends greatly on a patient’s health condition, as well as the amount of toxin used to treat the condition. Nevertheless, patients might need to receive repeat injections once the initial effects start to wear off.
This medicine is usually supplied as a powder that must be reconstituted with sterile saline solution prior to injection. The volume of solvent and its resulting dosage concentration can be obtained from the package insert. Only physicians experienced with preparing botulinum toxin injections should administer this type of injectable. In addition, hygiene is very important in ensuring the safety and efficacy of this medicine. After preparing the solution, administer it following the use instructions of the product.
Areas of use
Botulinum toxin is used to ease some health conditions caused by muscle spasms. Neurologic disorders usually affect the muscles in the limbs, neck, and even face. In some cases, pediatric patients suffering from lower limb spasticity caused by cerebral palsy can also experience an improvement.
This prescription-only medicine is also renowned for its aesthetic improvements. It works exceptionally well on smoothing out dynamic glabellar lines and some doctors use it for crow’s feet, depending on the product’s indications. In addition, excessive underarm sweating can also be temporarily solved with botulinum toxin injections. Furthermore, patients suffering from urinary incontinence caused by a neurogenic bladder or patients with chronic migraines can get some much-needed relief receiving injections of this muscle-relaxing solution.
A treatment session may last approximately 20 to 30 minutes depending on the degree of correcting needed.
As stated earlier, Clostridium botulinum bacteria is capable of producing eight different types of toxin which are Type A to Type H. While Type H is touted as the deadliest poison known to man, Types A and B are used commercially in medical industries. This prescription-only medicine is processed to contain only therapeutic dose of toxin to alleviate painful muscle contractions and spasms.
Some of the top brands of botulinum toxin include Dysport and Botox. These brands are made of Type A botulinum toxin and have been approved by health regulatory agencies in different areas of the world. For instance, in the USA by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).