BOTOX® is the brand name of a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. In large doses, this toxin can cause paralysis of the muscles and is referred to as botulism; this is often associated with food poisoning. Small amounts of this toxin when diluted can be directly injected into certain muscles, causing long-term muscle relaxation.
The FDA approved Botox-A in the late 1980s when it was discovered that BOTOX® could stop certain conditions. Physicians involved in aesthetics have been using BOTOX® for anti-aging purposes (wrinkle reduction) for many years. Within the past few years, new products that have similar preparations have been introduced into the U.S. market and have been well-received by patients.
These are the commercially available formulations in the U.S.:
- BOTOX®: OnabotulinumtoxinA
- Dysport®: AbobotulinumtoxinA
- Xeomin®: IncobotulinumtoxinA