There was a disturbing article regarding news from Australia about an expectant mother who in 2005 was treated in her first week of pregnancy with a botox rival, Dysport, and gave birth to a baby who was deaf and blind. The report goes on to say that the Australian version of the FDA, released documents last month detailing the case including a report from the manufacturer of Dysport which states there may be a “possible” link with the drugs usage during pregnancy and the unfortunate outcome.
Now for those of you in the states a few things should be known:
1. There are a lack of controlled studies into the effects of Botox on pregnant women and their unborn children, therefore it is impossible to say conclusively either way whether it is safe.
2. For the sake of erring on the side of caution, Botox’s manufacturers recommend that it is not used on either pregnant women or nursing mothers.
3. As with the effects during pregnancy, there is a lack of information on whether Botox injections can pass the toxin into breast milk.
There have been a number of animal studies in rabbits and rodents which show that in high doses, there is a link between botulinum toxin and low birth weight, problems with bone development, and even possible miscarriage. It should be highlighted that the doses used in the animal studies were far more than anyone would get for cosmetic or medicinal purposes.
Here in the US, no physician we know would do botox in a pregnant patient for cosmetic purposes. The reason is simple, if there isn’t enough information to know conclusively that it is not a possibility, it simply is not done. It should be noted again however, that if you have had botox recently and now find out that you are pregnant, the chances of this being a problem is exceedingly low- the amount of botox normally injected is simply not enough to circulate and cross the placenta in a high enough concentration to cause any problems. In fact, there is one case study out of Tennessee of a woman with cervical dystonia, a muscular disorder, who underwent 4 apparently uncomplicated full term pregnancies while receiving botox treatments regularly for her disorder.
The point is while there is little chance of this being a problem, if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant in the near future you should tell your doctor before undergoing any treatment.No comments