Anti-aging medications are the rage for people particularly interested in all forms of aesthetic treatments. From anti-aging creams, surgical remedies, beauty DIYs, several persons are increasingly taking interest in anti-aging remedies available in the beauty market.
One of the first visible signs of the aging process is wrinkles on the forehead. Due to stress and genetic reasons, some people may begin to experience wrinkling when they hit their early thirties and begin to seek remedies to delay the signs of aging.
Reversing aging has proven to be impossible but concealing the visible signs such as wrinkling has been made possible through the availability of anti-aging creams, plastic surgeries, and botulinum toxins such as Xeomin.
Though Xeomin is popularly known for its anti-wrinkling properties when administered, however, it can also be used for other medical conditions that affect the muscles. Below is a complete guide that explains Xeomin, its uses, the possible side effects, and the necessary precautions for use.
What Is Xeomin?
Xeomin is a type of botulism toxin that is made and marketed by Merz Pharmaceuticals and approved by the US Food And Drug Administration for treatment in both children and adults. It could also be referred to as incobotulinumtoxin A (1) or botulinum toxin type A, and this is because it is made from the bacteria ( clostridium botulinum ) that causes botulism.
Botulism is an illness where poison from the earlier mentioned bacteria enters the bloodstream and attacks the nerves and may result in paralysis if not treated urgently.
Botulinum toxins are known to block nerve activity in the muscles which in turn result in an impermanent reduction in muscle activity. Xeomin is a botulism toxin that is meant to reverse this effect in the muscle, that is why it is popularly known as an injection that blocks muscle activity in parts of the body where wrinkles are likely to form.
What Is Xeomin Used For?
The Xeomin injection is suitable for both adults and children but it is used to treat different ailments or medical conditions.
These medical conditions treated by Xeomin are usually those that affect the muscles in different parts of the body, Xeomin has proven to be an effective treatment option for neurological disorders, in some cases, it may correct them satisfactorily, reduce the effects of temporarily correct them.
Below are the major and FDA approved (2) uses of Xeomin;
- Chronic Sialorrhea
- Upper Limb Spasticity
- Cervical Dystonia
- Glabellar Lines.
1. Chronic Sialorrhea
Chronic Sialorrhea otherwise known as hyper-salivation or ptyalism is an illness that is common in children with neurological disorders, it results in excessive drooling caused by inadequate facial and oral muscle control (3). Xeomin is the first and only FDA-approved botulism toxin for the treatment of Chronic Sialorrhea in children from the age of two and older.
Xeomin was clinically tested and studied to be effective and safe for use on children after a 3 phase evaluation on two hundred and fifty-five children and adolescents between the ages of 2 to 17 was carried out. Injecting Xeomin into the glands that produce saliva in children is a long-lasting solution for chronic drooling.
2. Upper Limb Spasticity
Upper Limb Spasticity is a medical condition that affects the muscles present in the arms and hands. Patients with upper limb spasticity experience muscle tension that increases unhealthily in the arms and hands and results in tightness, stiffness, or overactivity. These effects in turn make it hard for such persons to make use of their hands and arms for basic tasks and also cause pain and discomfort.
Xeomin is also FDA approved for the treatment of upper limb spasticity in adults. It was clinically tested on adults and results were gotten in 12 to 14 weeks after the drug was administered, and it was proven to be safe for adults with upper limb spasticity.
Xeomin is injected into the muscles of patients with upper limb spasticity to interfere with the incorrect signals being sent from the brain to the muscles to cause tightness, immobility, and discomfort in the arms and hands.
2. Cervical Dystonia
Cervical Dystonia (4) is a rare condition where the muscles in the neck contract involuntarily. It is a painful neurological disorder that has the neck contracting into abnormal and discomforting postures. Cervical dystonia is also referred to as spasmodic torticollis. It affects the splenius capitis, trapezius, sternocleidomastoid, and levator scapulae muscles.
The FDA has also approved Xeomin injections as a medication for cervical dystonia in adults. With the use of Xeomin injections in the muscles responsible for cervical dystonia, the brain signals that tell the muscles to contract unnecessarily can be intercepted and stopped.
Blepharospasm or benign essential blepharospasm which is in simpler terms referred to as eye twitching is a rare condition that causes unwanted and involuntary eye movements such as trouble opening the eyes, twitching, and blinking. It is also a neurological disorder where the brain sends imbalanced signals to the muscles responsible for the eyes and leads to uncontrollable eye movements.
Xeomin is a medically tested and approved treatment option for blepharospasm. Being injected with the right dosage of Xeomin leads to a reduction of the muscle spasms that result in blepharospasm.
4. Glabellar lines
Glabellar lines are not a medical condition because they do not harm the body system, they are merely a natural occurrence in human beings. They are simply the frown lines present on the forehead or in between the eyebrows and they may appear more prominently in people owing to their genetic makeup or aging. They are also referred to as elevens or 11 lines because these lines appear as the first visible signs of aging and wrinkle formation.
The removal of glabellar lines with the use of Xeomin injections is simply an aesthetic choice aimed at facial modifications, it seeks to slow down the aging process.
This is the most popularly known use of Xeomin, it is a cosmetic injection that targets the muscles that cause facial wrinkling and reduces the appearance of the wrinkles to reveal clearer, firmer, and younger-looking skin.
Xeomin is a medication prescribed to temporarily smoothen out the appearance of severe frown lines between the eyebrows, it is injected in the muscles between the eyebrows to this prescription is only suitable for adults and has to be renewed after six months as the effects would have begun to fade.
What Are The Side Effects Of Xeomin?
While Xeomin is a suitable treatment for a number of medical conditions, it is formed with chemical compositions that may lead to temporary or severe side effects for persons who are allergic to some ingredients present in Xeomin. For this reason, it is very important to get medical advice and evaluation before taking Xeomin for any medical conditions or aesthetic modification.
The side effects of Xeomin are however rare, they are not present in all to whom the medication is administered.
The most common side effects of Xeomin are tooth problems, dry mouth, weakness of muscles, vision problems, trouble with swallowing, dry eyes, a seizure, headache, drooping eyelids, neck pain, and body pains. While these are common, most of them are evidence of your body adjusting and accepting the treatment and would gradually disappear after the body fully adjusts.
If you experience side effects such as difficulty in breathing, difficult or painful swallowing, dizziness, vision abnormalities, speaking problems, facial paralysis, non-stop eye irritations, eye pain, fever accompanied by coughing, or shortness of breath, you would need to see a doctor as soon as possible as it may result in serious health problems.
Xeomin may cause severe reactions for persons with allergies to the treatment. Signs that indicate an allergic reaction would include hives, wheezing, difficulty in breathing, feeling lightheaded, gradual swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat. It is important to immediately discontinue the medication and see a doctor.
Another side effect of Xeomin is that in some cases, the botulinum toxin contained in it may spread to other parts of the body it was not injected into. Where this is the case, the reactions that follow could be life-threatening, and as the other side effects require you would need to seek medical attention immediately.
Warnings and Precautions For Xeomin Usage
As a medically prescribes botulinum toxin, usage of Xeomin comes attached with instructions that must be adhered to. Adherence is compulsory to avoid the occurrence of allergic side effects or other side effects that emerge as a result of improper dosage or administration of the drug.
Since Xeomin usage for treatment can result in breathing and/ swallowing difficulties, it is advised that patients that already have conditions that make breathing or swallowing difficult should get a doctor’s opinion before having Xeomin administered. A doctor would evaluate how serious their breathing or swallowing difficulties are and advise them on whether or not to go ahead with it.
Since these are rare side effects, it may be safe for such patients. If advised against it, do not use it as it could cause severe life-threatening complications.
When being used for glabellar lines, it is important not to exceed the prescribed dosage to avoid an adverse reaction. Adherence to exact dosage for glabellar lines reduces a complication of drooping upper eyelids otherwise known as ptosis
Adequate studies and clinical tests have not been made to determine whether Xeomin is safe to be used by pregnant women. If the medical condition of the pregnant woman requires urgent attention, the Xeomin injections can be used as long as the parties involved are aware of the possible risks.
If you are allergic to any of the ingredients in Xeomin, do not use the drug for any treatment. If you have reacted badly to any botulinum toxin in the past, have bleeding problems, have plans to get the surgery done, or have had surgery recently done on your face, do not use Xeomin.
Before receiving Xeomin you must have gone over the ingredients with your doctor and given them a report of all your medical conditions as well as all the medicines you are currently taking. Using certain drugs with Xeomin may result in severe side effects.
A simple aftercare step to take note of after getting Xeomin injections is to make a conscious effort to keep your hands off your face for at least three hours after administration. You would also need to avoid lying down or getting engaged in any seriously draining activity between four to six hours after the injections have been used.
Frequently Asked Questions About Xeomin
How Long Do Xeomin Injections Last?
After a single treatment using Xeomin injections, results from the treatment will be visible as early as a week later. After the solution is completely absorbed by the body and it takes full effect, these results will last between three to six months.
How much is a unit of Xeomin?
A unit of Xeomin costs $5.00 – $5.40, prices may vary from place to place but it should not cost more than $10 per unit at most. For the aesthetic facial treatments for which Xeomin is administered, 20-40 units of Xeomin are required for the wrinkle lines on the forehead, 5-20 units are required for the treatment of crow’s feet around the eyes, and 15-30 units are needed for the treatment of frown lines between the eyebrows.
Is Xeomin cheaper than botox?
With a comparative analysis merely based on the price difference, Xeomin costs less than botox. While an average cost of a Xeomin treatment is $425, the average cost of a Botox session is $550. This is owing to the fact that botox is a treatment option for more aesthetic modifications and medical conditions than Xeomin.
How many units are in a vial of Xeomin?
A vial of Xeomin typically contains either 50 or 100 units of it, while a syringe of Xeomin is made up of 100 units.
Is Xeomin safe?
Despite the possibility of severe side effects, Xeomin is clinically tested and FDA-approved to prove its efficiency and safety. The side effects of Xeomin are rare and recorded in only 1% of the patients it was administered to.
Can Xeomin be used for the treatment of crow’s feet?
Xeomin is an effective treatment choice for the wrinkles around the eye area referred to as crow’s feet. As earlier mentioned, with 5-20 units, one can treat crow’s feet with a single session of Xeomin injections.
Can Xeomin make you sick?
If you have an allergic reaction to Xeomin or did not get medical advice before getting a dosage of Xeomin and tur out to be allergic to any ingredient in Xeomin, there will be severe side effects as it kicks in. the side effects of Xeomin are severe but rare and avoidable with proper medical consultation before administration.
Can Xeomin cause botulism?
In a scenario whereby a patient has breathing problems or experiences pain while swallowing before getting Xeomin injections, they are most likely to experience botulism as a side effect of Xeomin treatment. Botulism is a severe side effect of Xeomin caused by the spread of botulinum to areas other than the injection site.
Can Xeomin be used for migraines?
Xeomin has been proven to serve as an effective treatment option for chronic migraines, the process for administering this injection is rather tricky and sensitive and must be done by an experienced health care professional. It was recognized as a neuromodulating drug – that is a drug that reverses or modifies the neural responses of the body to a neural stimulus- by the U.S. FDA alongside other botulinum toxins.
Do Xeomin injections hurt?
Of course, injections are known to have needles that need to pierce the skin for the medication to make direct contact with the body. This means that Xeomin injections will sting slightly upon application, it is no cause for alarm, your body made contact with a sharp object and the sting felt is a natural reaction.
The cosmetic injection which Xeomin is popularly known for due to its anti-aging properties happens to offer much more worth than it is given credit for. Xeomin is a remarkable drug not only for the reduction of wrinkles and fine lines but the treatment of excessive drooling, drooping eyelids, limb, and arm muscle contractions, overactive bladders, chronic headache, or migraine, and excessive sweating.
Xeomin is a purified neurotoxin that is suitable for treatment in children and adults and has a remarkably short administration period in comparison to other botulinum toxins, it has no added filters and is less likely to result in allergic reactions but the possibilities still exist especially for people that are allergic to some ingredients it contains.
- Marriane Mychaskiw (2016), Everything You Need To Know About Xeomin, The Botox Alternative.
- Phillip Thorton (2021), Xeomin.
- Deven Hopp (2021), Hollywood’s Best-Kept Secret; Naked Botox.
- Lois Levine (2020), FDA approves Xeomin (incobotulinumtoxin A) for chronic sialorrhea.
- Matthias Imhof, MD and Ulrich Kuhne, MD: A Phase III Study of Incobotulinumtoxin A in the Treatment of Glabellar Frown Lines.