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July 30th, 2004

By Claudia Lopez : eCureMe Staff Reporter

Where is the money being spent in medical development these days? Is it a breakthrough in AIDS? Cancer research?


These days, people are shooting needles into their faces to take away a wrinkles, loose skin, droops cheeks or anything else that might remind them that they, are, yes, aging.


If you don’t believe me, take a look at pictures of Jon Kerry before the election started and now. He looks like he took a couple of needles to the jowls, no? So what is Botox and why are people shooting needles full of it into their faces?

Botox, which is a bacterium, prevents the release of acetylcholine, a controlling agent in the nerves and muscles that create movement. Once transmission has been blocked, muscles relax and then contract the sagging skin that causes loose jowls, crow’s feet or other wrinkles in the face.

These days, people are getting shots of Botox in the face to enhance the effects of plastic surgery.

"Yes, can I help you?"
"Uh, Yeah, I’ll have some collagen in the lips, andíŽ could you suck out a bit of my cheek?"
"Would you like a shot of Botox with that?"
"Sure, why not?"

Why not?

Well, aside from the bruising, nausea, drooping of eyelids and respiratory infections that are possible upon injection, there is also the possibility that the production of Neurotransmitters in your brain will be halted, therefore creating long term nerve damage.

Of course, widespread Botox treatment is a relatively knew endeavor, so the studies are not yet conclusive. However, if you are injecting something into your body to stop the production of cells, it seems like a natural path of reason that it will prevent growth of something.

So do you need to be a doctor to perform Box injections? Nope. All you need is a certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and that takes five years to get.

Now, the news isn’t really all that bad. First of all, Botox injections usually last about 3-4 months - and the side effects, at least the initial ones, last for a short period as well.

What about for the loot? Well, your plastic surgeon will pay around 400 dollars for a bottle of Botox, and you will pay up to 2000 bones per injection (no pun intended). If you don’t want your face to be a one hit wonder, it is recommended you keep at it with consistent injections for about 6 months.

With the state of the current economic environment, it would be wise to make sure you can handle the financial burden of Botox, because it would be a shame to stop midway through, after you’ve been in a relationship for a bit, and then all of a sudden, your eyelids stat to slide down the side of your face and your cheeks pop out like Dizzy Gillespie.

Temporary solutions usually leave long lasting effects down the road, so please make a careful decision before altering your body chemistry. Beauty is more than skin deep, but there’s no need for you to go searching for it with a needle.

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