Botox treatments have become as common as taking a weekly massage. Nowadays, people take Botox injections to improve their appearance, ranging from treatments that iron out wrinkles, make one’s lips look fuller and lift the cheek bones. However, almost half the world who has been sucked into the race to look young forever will be disappointed to know that a number of adverse reactions have been linked to Botox.
In a public statement posted on its web site, the US FDA said that Botox and Botox Cosmetic (Botulinum Toxin Type A) and Myobloc (Botulinum Toxin Type B) have bee linked to adverse reactions including respiratory failure and death.
Besides being popular for smoothing out facial wrinkles, Botox has also been clinically approved for treatment of cervical dystonia commonly known as rigid neck muscle. In fact, it has been Myobloc that was approved for such neck conditions. Treatment involved an injection made with botox that blocks nerve impulses to muscles, making them relax. Other known uses include easing pain and stopping perspiration.
Last month, Public Citizen Health Research Group has petitioned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to require the strongest possible warning, highlighted in a “black box,” on Allergan Inc’s Botox and Solstice Neurosciences’ Myobloc. This notification follows reports of 16 deaths after the botulinum toxin spread inside the body.
According to the FDA, the adverse effects related to Botox were found in approved as well as non-approved usages and that they may relate to overdosing.
“There is no evidence that these reactions are related to any defect in the products,” the US FDA’s statement read.
The most severe adverse effects were found in children treated for spasticity in their limbs associated with cerebral palsy. Treatment of spasticity is not an FDA-approved use of botulism toxins in children or adults.
The FDA, which is currently reviewing safety data from clinical studies submitted by the manufacturers of Botox, Botox Cosmetic and Myobloc, said that until its investigation is completed, doctors and patients should watch for signs of botulinum effects in the body such as weakness, trouble swallowing or respiratory distress.