Botox: Safer, Expanded uses Make Drug the Latest Blockbuster Dermatologist Dr. Lance Barazani on alternative uses

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Relied on by doctors and patients alike as the best way to quickly and safely make wrinkles disappear, Botox is now being seen by many as the new "medical blockbuster" for its possible effectiveness in treating serious medical conditions like migraines, vocal cord problems and restless leg syndrome.

Relied on by doctors and patients alike as the best way to quickly and safely make wrinkles disappear, Botox is now being seen by many as the new "medical blockbuster" for its possible effectiveness in treating serious medical conditions like migraines, vocal cord problems and restless leg syndrome.

Botox has long been known for its skin-enhancing dermatologic benefits, explained dermatologist Lance Barazani, M.D., F.A.A.D.--one of the first Long Island doctors to use Botox and one of just a handful of physicians nationwide to serve as a Botox Cosmetic National Education faculty member.

Now, however, scientist-written articles in medical journal like Medical Hypotheses are recommending Botox be used to treat an increasing range of conditions that involve the glands and muscles, from chewing and swallowing disorders to pelvic muscle problems to anal fissures. Even asthma, enlarged prostate and obesity have been sited as possible conditions that could benefit from Botox therapy.

Dr. Barazani has offered patients Botox therapy since 1996, six years prior to the drug's U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for wrinkle treatment.

"It's really very exciting to think that Botox could be as effective for medical problems as it has been for cosmetic ones," said Dr. Barazani, who has practiced at Advanced Dermatology, P.C., and the Center for Laser and Cosmetic Surgery since 1994. "When used properly by skilled and knowledgeable physicians, the drug has a strong safety track record. Time and further research will prove whether Botox can become the same kind of 'miracle drug' for these new medical applications. But the potential is definitely there."

Developed by a California ophthalmologist searching for a cure for crossed eyes, Botox has been used by dermatologists for more than 20 years to effectively erase:

  •     Vertical lines between the eyebrows and on the bridge of the nose
  •     Squint lines or "crow's feet" at the corners of the eyes
  •     Horizontal lines on the forehead
  •     Muscle bands visible on the neck, commonly known as "turkey neck"

Dr. Barazani said he has also had great success using Botox to stop uncontrollable lip puckering, reduce the production of skin oil, and to lift drooping nipples. Botox is also FDA-approved and has long been used successfully by doctors to treat several medical conditions, including:

  •     Excessive underarm sweating
  •     Severe neck and shoulder muscle contractions caused by the neurological disorder cervical dystonia
  •     Clenched jaw
  •     Uncontrollable blinking
  •     Crossed or misaligned eyes

The FDA is also expected to soon approve Botox injections for stroke patients suffering from limb spasm.

Made from the same nerve toxin that causes botulism, Botox has a long and strong safety track record when used properly, the FDA stresses. It works by paralyzing or weakening muscles, or blocking nerve signals to certain glands.

Injection of the drug--which should always and only be performed by an experienced physician like Dr. Barazani--takes just a few minutes. A small needle is used and rare side effects are generally mild and temporary, including injection site discomfort, flu-like symptoms, headache and upset stomach. In rare instances, facial injections can cause temporary drooping eyelids, Dr. Barazani added: "But again, this side effect is extremely rare."

Most people see improvements three to seven days after the injection. The American Dermatology Association praises Botox for its ability to "make a great difference in a person's life," with improvements lasting up to four months. At this point, another injection is needed.

"Each repeat treatment tends to last longer than the one before, which tends to outweigh the fact that Botox is not a permanent cure," Dr. Barazani said. "The effectiveness and safety of the drug also can't be stressed enough. Patients are almost always pleased, because the results are always amazing--with even more possibilities and amazing results to come."

Dr. Barazani earned his medical degree from New York Medical College. He served his internal medicine residency at the University Hospital Stony Brook, NY. He continued his training as associate physician at The Rockefeller University Laboratory for Investigative Dermatology in NY, where he completed a two-year postdoctoral research fellowship before completing his dermatology residency at New York Hospital Cornell Medical Center. Dr. Barazani has conducted research work on skin disorders and wound healing, with his findings published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology and other peer-reviewed medical journals. As a member of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgeons he performs natural hair transplants regularly and is a leading expert. He was one of the first physicians on Long Island to perform cosmetic Botox ® treatments in 1996. He is recognized by Botox ® Cosmetic as a member of the National Education Faculty, an honor limited to very few physicians nationwide. Dr. Barazani has been a member of Advanced Dermatology and the Center for Laser and Cosmetic Surgery since 1994.

Contact:

MELISSA CHEFEC
MCPR Public Relations
203-968-6625
http://www.advancedd.com

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