BOTOX cosmetic treatments accounted for nearly 3 million procedures in 2007, and continue to be the most popular nonsurgical cosmetic enhancement for both men and women. The injectable can help get rid of frown lines, reduce crow's feet and smooth out the skin. Botox continues to be the most sought-after alternative to face lift surgery.
However, recent complaints about the side effects and even deaths associated with BOTOX have led to the filing of several lawsuits against Allergan, Inc., the makers of BOTOX. The L.A. Times reports on a number of deaths related to Botox, including the death of a 7-year-old girl with cerebral palsy who was receiving Botox injections as part of her treatment prgoram, and the death of a 69-year old woman who was receiving Botox injections to reduce neck and shoulder pain.
Allergan is fighting back with proof of the safety of Botox, claiming that Botox has both 'approved' and 'unapproved' uses. Several doctors and physicians use Botox to treat migraines, manage depression, reduce underarm sweating or improve the conditions of a chronic disease. Unfortunately, these 'unapproved' uses may prove to be fatal.
16 deaths were reported in January 2008, and consumer groups begged for better warnings on every box of Botox. One of the biggest dangers associated with Botox is migration; if the compound spreads to the throat, it can cause partial paralysis of the neck and even cut off breathing.
The FDA issued a warning about Botox in February 2008, and encourages all doctors to warn patients about the potential side effects of botulinum toxin treatments - even if it's used only for wrinkle removal.