Updated: Jun 22
The most important note to remember is that you should still get your COVID vaccine! Read more...
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What is the story with the COVID vaccine and botulinum injections for wrinkles?
A report published in September 2022 by Azzam et al revealed that a review of 45 patients receiving 2 COVID vaccines prior to botulinum toxin type A injections (likely Botox, Xeomin, or Dysport although brand was not specified) for aesthetic purposes demonstrated a reduced time frame for efficacy from about 118 days to 96 days. That is about 22 days of lost efficacy. This means that these patients that had botulinum toxin injections in the past and normally had about 118 days of effectiveness from their injections noted that after receiving two COVID vaccines at least 30 days prior to their botulinum injections lost about 22 days of their wrinkle-improving benefits of the neuromodulator injections. Note that patients that had COVID illnesses were excluded from the study.
You should absolutely still get your COVID vaccine! This only means that there is a chance that your botulinum injections might wear off a little sooner than expected. This was a very small study and difficult to say how many people are truly impacted. From a health perspective, health should always come first and vaccinations are a priority. There is a chance that over the course of a .year if you were obtaining botulinum toxin injections for aesthetic purposes every 4 months if you notice it wearing off sooner than expected, then you may be obtaining treatments every 3 months.
Also remember that over the years, we have noted that some people naturally lose the effectiveness of their injections requiring more units or more frequent injections. I have been injecting neuromodulators for 20 years and noted a decreased efficacy occurring in patients that have been receiving these for years well before the vaccine became available. We often will switch brands when this is noted to recapture some of the effectiveness over time.
Have there been any other side effects noted with the COVID vaccine and Botox injections?
There are 2 case reports of a hypersensitivity reaction occurring in patients obtaining Botox injections soon after the COVID vaccine. The symptoms included flu-like symptoms in addition to facial swelling. These symptoms resolved over a couple of weeks. The reports conclude that perhaps waiting two to three months after the vaccine to obtain neurotoxin injections.