BOTOX® has been on the market long enough and is sufficiently popular that we all have a pretty good idea of how it works, deactivating and relaxing the facial muscles that cause dynamic wrinkles. But what women and men in Virginia Beach and beyond might not realize is that a recent study suggests that BOTOX® actually has the ability to make skin younger, a revelation that surprises many, but not Dr. Ben Hugo of Virginia Beach.
A number of doctors who provide BOTOX® noticed that the procedure appeared to improve the skin’s pliability and elasticity. According to an article titled “Botox Benefits Go Beyond Wrinkle Removal: Study” in Newsmax Health, Dr. James Bonaparte, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon and assistant professor at the University of Ottawa in Canada, felt compelled to investigate.
“We found if we treat people with BOTOX® using standard techniques, we see an increase in elasticity, which is what you’d see in people with more youthful skin,” Bonaparte explained. “We’re actually seeing evidence that we, for some reason, are getting more elastin and collagen in the skin.”
Elastin and collagen are the proteins that help skin maintain its youthful tightness and flexibility. As we age, the skin produces less of these proteins, causing sagging and an aged appearance. For women and men in Virginia Beach, that might result in an appearance that no longer reflects how you feel.
Over the course of the study, which was published on JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery, Bonaparte and his colleagues administered BOTOX® to 48 women whose average age was 55. None of them had previously received a BOTOX® treatment, and the doctors focused on treating the area between the eyebrows and around the patients’ eyes. As a result, researchers noted increased elasticity that mimicked more youthful skin.
Previously, doctors had theorized that this initial elasticity could be the effect of inflammation or swelling caused by the BOTOX® treatment, but according to Bonaparte, researchers found no evidence to support this theory. In fact, the increased elasticity endured about the same length as the BOTOX® treatment, which is roughly about three to four months.
Doctor Catherine Winslow, a plastic surgeon who wrote an editorial that accompanied the study, theorized that BOTOX® actually produces an antioxidant effect on the skin tissue, providing the skin with an opportunity to heal itself by paralyzing the facial muscles that produce toxins that harm the skin’s elastin and collagen.
But the researchers aren’t yet done. Bonaparte expressed an interest in developing a topical medication that could produce the same effect on the skin, and the team’s next line of inquiry will be to determine whether BOTOX® produces long-term positive effects on the skin based on the fact that patients who frequently receive BOTOX® treatments are eventually able to receive lower dosages or have longer gaps between treatments while maintaining the positive effects.
Patients curious about how BOTOX® treatments can help them turn back the clock and what the nonsurgical procedure entails should contact a qualified medical practitioner like Dr. Ben Hugo of Virginia Beach.
Dr. Ben Hugo of Ben Hugo Plastic Surgery in Virginia Beach has been practicing medicine for nearly 50 years starting as a medical student in Cape Town’s Groote Schuur Hospital in 1967 where he witnessed the world’s first successful human heart transplant. He completed his plastic surgery residencies in South Africa, the Hospital for Sick Children in London, and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He performed one of the world’s earliest microsurgical free flap transfers, which was an essential step on the path toward the development of contemporary surgical techniques. Dr. Hugo is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, and the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, among a handful of other organizations.