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From Toxin to Treatment: The History of Botox

August 18, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — belldentalky @ 7:05 pm
A young-looking woman surrounded by her older face in mirrors

On the quest to turn back the hands of time and maintain a youthful appearance, few treatments have gained as much popularity as Botox. Yet, behind its now-famed status in the world of cosmetic enhancements lies a surprising history.

Read on to take a journey through time into the intriguing origins and evolution of Botox, a brand that has become synonymous with ageless beauty for millions of people worldwide.

Early Origins and Isolation

After an outbreak of botulism in 1905, a Belgian scientist named Emile Pierre van Ermengem discovered among those affected a bacterium that released a toxin he called clostridium botulinum.

For decades after its original discovery, the toxin was studied for medicinal purposes. Experiments that attempted to distill clostridium botulinum were unsuccessful until the botulinum toxin was finally isolated in crystalline form by Dr. Edward Schantz.

Early Medical Testing

The first clinical study of the botulinum toxin was performed in 1977 to help treat patients suffering from strabismus (cross eyes.) While performing these experiments on monkeys, the scientists discovered that the toxin had an intriguing smoothing effect on the skin around the animals’ noses and eyes.

In 1989, Allergan, a pharmaceutical company also responsible for Restasis, a popular eye drop treatment, introduced the first FDA-approved botulinum toxin treatment for eyelid spasms and crossed eyes after successful human trials. This treatment was branded Botox.

Botox at the Turn of the Millennium

In the early 2000s, Botox was approved by the FDA for a host of other treatments for various conditions such as:

  • Reducing the associated abnormal head position and neck pain of cervical dystonia.
  • Cosmetic improvement of moderate to severe glabellar lines between the eyebrows.
  • A condition known as hyperhidrosis which causes excessive underarm sweating.
  • Therapies for increased muscle stiffness in elbow, wrist, and finger muscles with upper limb spasticity.
  • Prevention of headaches in adults with chronic migraines.
  • Loss of bladder control which is medically known as urinary incontinence.
  • Lateral canthal lines in the face near the eyes, also known as “crow’s feet.”

Today, dentists have begun to take on special training to use Botox for various aesthetic treatments. Their knowledge of the structure of the mouth and face, along with their expertise with quick, steady injections makes them ideal candidates to perform Botox procedures for their patients.

There is still new research and new formulas being discovered that use Botox as a base. The use of an injected microbe to treat disease is an important medical advancement that may soon pave the way for additional treatments mankind has yet to find to solve complicated conditions.

Botox has evolved into a revolutionary tool in medicine and dental aesthetics. With ongoing research and advancements, the story of botulinum toxin continues to be written, promising exciting developments in the years to come.

About the Practice

Bell Dental, a family-owned and operated practice, provides exceptional dental care with advanced technology. They offer a wide range of services to meet your unique needs, delivered by a compassionate and highly skilled team. Your oral health and satisfaction are their top priorities, ensuring your comfort during every visit. To schedule a Botox consultation, or explore other services, visit the website here or call (502) 749-2355 for more information.

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