Blog entry by Maria Tom
Most people who have Botox treatments expect a bit of a lift, especially after the injection site has healed and the Botox has reached its full effect. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. It is possible for Botox injections given in the forehead to cause the eyebrows to droop. This most often occurs if too much Botox is used, or if Botox treatments are given a little too frequently.
The technical term for droopy brows is Brow Ptosis. In most cases, droopiness wears off in a few days, but in some cases, drooping can persist. In some cases, drooping is the result of swelling, which can be painful. In other cases, the skin over the eyebrows can sag, sometimes far enough over the eyes as to affect vision. Botox treatments are intended to smooth wrinkles caused by aging, but in some cases can lead to droopy brows, which can cause embarrassment.
In your forehead, just above each of your eyebrows, is a muscle controlling the brow. Botox works by paralyzing certain muscles. Eyebrow drooping occurs when Botox injected into the forehead affects these muscles. In these cases, the brow muscles relax too much, causing the skin to droop, leading to the appearance of a heavy brow. Eyebrow drooping does not always affect both sides equally, in some cases only one side or the other may droop. This is why it is critical that your doctor takes the time to learn to inject Botox properly before treating you.
Drooping eyelids are a common complaint after Botox injections in the forehead, so it’s a fairly common side effect. In most cases, the drooping is temporary and should disappear in a couple of days, but it is possible for drooping to persist.
In some cases, drooping can also occur in the eyelids rather than the brow, though the brow is most commonly affected. Many people have a tendency to raise the brows, even when they don’t necessarily intend to. After Botox injections, it’s common to attempt to raise the brows as normal, but muscle paralysis from the Botox causes the brows to not move, making them feel especially heavy. While annoying, brow ptosis is actually preferable to eye ptosis. True eye ptosis can make it impossible to open the affected eye. Even when Botox isn’t injected into the muscles above the eye, it is possible for it to spread and affect muscles surrounding those treated. If you have had Botox treatments and are having trouble opening your eyes, call your doctor immediately.