Everyone has heard of Botox, the neuromodulator that is the world’s most popular cosmetic procedure year in and year out. It’s more popular than the plethora of stars who swear by it. But at Northcoast Laser, we also offer Xeomin for our patients.
Why offer something just like Botox? Yes, it’s true that Xeomin is made from the botulinum toxin type A. But Xeomin consists of nothing but the toxin; it has no additives. This can be beneficial for patients who have had a reaction to Botox.
What is Xeomin?
Xeomin is a neuromodulator, meaning it stops muscles from contracting. Like Botox, it had other uses long before it was put into service fighting wrinkles. Xeomin originally gained FDA approval for the treatment of two conditions cervical dystonia (a painful condition where the neck muscles contract involuntarily causing the head to twist to one side) and blepharospasm (involuntary tight closure of the eyelids).
More recently, Xeomin was approved for cosmetic use for moderate to severe frown lines, lines between the eyebrows (the 11s), and other forehead lines. It is also effective on crow’s feet. Generally, all neuromodulators are effective on the top third of the face.
Xeomin works exactly like Botox, but in case you’re not familiar with how these injectables do their magic, here’s a quick primer.
Xeomin is made from the botulinum toxin type A, the same bacteria that cause botulism. A few decades back, doctors discovered that when delivered in very small amounts this toxin could temporarily paralyze a muscle. It does this by blocking the signals from the muscle’s nerves to the brain. Because the brain does not receive the message, it doesn’t contract the muscle. This can be very valuable in cases of involuntary muscle spasms such as those described above. The botulinum toxin type A has even proven effective at treating migraine headaches and excessive underarm sweating. If only the guy in Broadcast News had it way back then!
But it was when it was tried on facial wrinkles that the toxin became famous. When we perform common behaviors such as frowning or squinting, certain muscles contract and form wrinkles on the surface above. Over time those wrinkles can become more permanent due to these repeated contractions. But Xeomin (and Botox and Dysport) stops the muscles from contracting, so the wrinkles on the surface don’t form or are far less apparent.
How is Xeomin different from Botox?
The difference between Xeomin and Botox is purity, kind of like the difference between Dorothy and the Wicked Witch of the West. Xeomin doesn’t fool around; it contains nothing but the botulinum toxin type A. Because of this some doctors have given Xeomin the name “naked injectable.” Botox has some added surface proteins in addition to the toxin. Some people can have a reaction to these proteins. In those people, Xeomin may not cause a reaction.
How long does Xeomin take to start working?
Botox and Xeomin are nearly identical in how long they take to shut down the muscles. Both take from five to seven days to fully take effect.
How long does Xeomin last?
Xeomin does its wrinkle-eliminating magic for three to six months. Different people absorb the now-inactive Xeomin at different rates, explaining the spread in the length of effectiveness. Once the body absorbs Xeomin, the wrinkles will start to form again.
If you’re interested in the botulinum toxin, but have had trouble with Botox in the past, maybe Xeomin can work for you. Call us at Northcoast Laser Cosmetics, 440-NEW-FACE, and let’s talk about it.