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Can Botox improve the healing of scars?

Botox is not just about beautification; the injections can also have a very practical use for people who have just undergone reconstructive or plastic surgery procedures. A recent study by experts at the Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine found that botulinum toxin injections can help to smooth over facial scars facilitated by these procedures. Their research discovered that botox is able to produce flatter, narrower scars that heal much better.

Researchers tested their theory on sixteen patients who were undergoing surgery to remove things like cysts, birthmarks and port wine stains. Shortly after these surgeries were carried out, patients were injected with Botox. The study found that within six months, the scar had healed much better after these injections. They graded it on a ten point scale—scars which had healed without Botox were an average of 4.97/10 on the scale, while those which had healed with Botox were approximately 5.76/10.

Botox injections are performed to relax the muscles. In doing so, they have often been able to stunt the aging process on people’s skin. Because muscles are working less, for instance, they are resulting in fewer wrinkles and creases on the skin. However, this test shows that the same effects Botox has on the skin can also be used to help scars heal. It decreases the amount of stress on a raw wound, allowing it to heal at a much quicker rate than it normally would.

This is not the only time that Botox has been used for medical purposes; it is also performed as a solution for excessive sweating, twitching and chronic migraines. “While most research is needed,” Rod J. Rohrich MD says, “this new study may demonstrate that early post-surgical injections of botilinum toxin can produce better, smaller and flatter facial scars”.

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