Skin Home > What Is OnabotulinumtoxinA Used For?
Although onabotulinumtoxinA is primarily used for improving the appearance of facial lines, it can also be used to treat many other conditions, such as eyelid twitches and severe underarm sweating. The drug works by inhibiting the action of acetylcholine, a chemical that transmits nerve signals. Off-label uses include the treatment of muscle spasms in children with cerebral palsy.
An Introduction to OnabotulinumtoxinA UsesOnabotulinumtoxinA (Botox®) is a prescription medication approved for several different uses. Although the drug is well-known for its ability to improve the appearance of facial lines, it is also used to treat severe sweating and a few conditions that cause muscle spasms.
Using OnabotulinumtoxinA for Facial Lines
OnabotulinumtoxinA is used to temporarily reduce the appearance of "frown lines" between the eyebrows. Initially, it was approved for this use only in people 65 years old or younger, as studies have suggested that the drug is less effective in older people. However, this age restriction seems to have been removed.
The beneficial effects of onabotulinumtoxinA when used for this purpose last about three to four months. In order to maintain the effects, you will need to receive injections periodically.
OnabotulinumtoxinA is also approved for treating moderate-to-severe crow's feet (wrinkles at the outer corners of the eye) in adults.
How Is It Used for Head and Neck Spasms?OnabotulinumtoxinA is also approved to treat cervical dystonia, a condition that involves unusual muscle spasms or contractions in the head or neck. Frequently, cervical dystonia causes an abnormal head position (often twisted to one side), abnormal head or neck movements, and neck pain.
This medication can help decrease the severity of the abnormal head position and can help relieve neck pain. Although onabotulinumtoxinA will usually cause some improvement immediately, the full effects usually take about six weeks to develop and last for about three months.