Appearance Medicine – Looking our age has become optional. New ingredients. The introduction and continual evolution of peptides for cellular functions. The cosmetic and appearance industry is forever introducing ‘new’.

Interesting though, that muscle relaxing treatments Botox & Dysport are derivatives from a treatment that has been around for over a hundred years – and yet are the most commonly used treatments in the USA today. That is because they are so effective. No overnight wonder, the approved uses and applications of botulinum toxin A (BTX) in the medical field has an interesting history – dating back as far as the early 1800s, but not approved for cosmetic use (Appearance Medicine) until around a hundred and fifty years later. Here’s how it rolled out:

  • In 1989 BTX first gained FDA approval for treatment of chronic eye twitching for people aged 12 or older following many trials during the 80s. From this followed the observation that facial lines around the eyes became less noticeable, and the first cosmetic use for BTX was identified. BTX is now used by widely eye specialists for treatment of eye and eyelid twitching. If left untreated, this annoying affliction can result in facial imbalance as one muscle lengthens and the other shortens.
  • It wasn’t until 2002 however that the FDA approved the use of BTX for treatment of glabellar frown lines – not that very long ago!
  • In 1993 BTX was approved for the treatment of hyperhydrosis – excessive sweating (and in the Appearance Medicine field is restricted to treatment of underarms), in 2000 it gained approval for treatment of cervical dystonia – involuntary and severe neck twitching. From here followed various application of the muscle relaxation function for people who have suffered strokes or mini strokes resulting in facial imbalance, inability to talk properly, treatment of muscular sclerosis and cerebral palsy – including even some studies on infants and young children.
  • In 2014 BTX was nominated and approved as a treatment for chronic migraine headaches and became rapidly very popular in this area. Also in 2014, BTX was approved in the UK for treatment of restricted ankle movement due to lower limb twitch movement as a result of stroke – incredible improvement of quality of life was made possible for thousands of people.
  • For cosmetic use, the first approvals for use of BTX were gained in two areas in the 1980s – firstly after trials conducted by California Plastic Surgeon Richard Clark, who was treating and improving facial asymmetry caused by facial nerve paralysis – achieving facial balance by relaxing the non paralysed side with BTX injections, and by following studies of eyelid twitching patients. From there, the only way has been up. Now a 2.9 billion dollar industry, use of BTX in cosmetic applications leads the way in the appearance medicine stakes.
  • As at 2014, BTX muscle relaxing treatments are the most common cosmetic procedure undertaken in America, with 6.7 million Botox/Dysport treatments undertaken in 2014, up six percent on previous year and six times the number of laser hair removal treatments!
  • Second on the list is Dermal Fillers – 2.3 million treatments delivered. The success of these treatments is well founded on medical science and ongoing research. [source: Plastic Surgery Org].
    Consumers can rest easy knowing that the regulatory bodies have conducted extensive studies over long periods of time to ensure the various application of this product is not just safe, but controlled and measured.

Only medical professionals may use the products and only after extensive training. In New Zealand, Dianna and Kirsty is one of the most experienced professionals to treat clients – you are in safe hands. Please ask questions, or post comments – we would love to find out what you think!