What Does Botox Exactly Do? Learn How Botox Works
If you are thinking about getting Botox, but haven't done it yet because you just don't know how Botox works, this article is for you. When you're done, you'll know how Botox works, what Botox does, and what Botox can't do.
Botox is a protein. It is an extremely small amount of an extremely purified protein. There are absolutely no bacteria in a vial of Botox, NONE. The confusion has to do with how Botox is made.
The disease, botulism, is caused by bacteria that create large amounts of 7 different proteins at the same time. These 7 proteins are labeled A, B, C, D, E, F, and G. Only proteins A and B have any medical use. When Botox is created, protein "A" is extracted, purified, and accurately measured.
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So what happens when Botox is injected? The Botox extends about 1 cm. Any extension beyond 1 cm is so small that it has very little chance of doing anything. The protein is then absorbed into nerves 1 cm from the injection site. Over the next 15 minutes, the Botox protein, now inside the nerve, finds another protein called SNAP-25, attaches itself to it, and dissolves it. In the process of doing so, the Botox itself dissolves. In other words, after 15 minutes, the Botox IS GONE.
At this point, the nerve is still alive and well, but it has lost most of its SNAP-25 proteins. Without SNAP-25 proteins, the nerve does not know how to talk to the muscle. The muscle is perfectly fine, but it is not getting any messages from the nerve.
So they both just sit there and do nothing. It takes about 3 months for the nerve to make new SNAP-25 proteins. This is why Botox seems to last for about 3 months. Remember, Botox clears up in about 15 minutes. The duration of the effect is based on the time it takes for these nerves to produce new SNAP-25 proteins.