Concern over use of medicine for cosmetic ends

By staff reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Medicine

Swissmedic has raised the alarm over the misuse of medical products
containing botulin as anti-wrinkle treatments.

The Swiss institute of medical products said doctors are increasingly prescribing the bacterial toxin as a cosmetic treatment to fight wrinkles. Medicine​ Normally, the substance is used as an active ingredient in prescription products used to treat motor and nervous system diseases. However, some doctors are prescribing these medicines to women as young as 30 because of the power of botulin to even out wrinkles by paralyzing muscles under the skin. Potential dangers​ Swissmedic said this amounts to more than misuse because the toxin is far from benign and can lead to swallowing and breathing problems when injected in the neck. The body said doctors have a duty not to prescribe medicines to patients for reasons not mentioned on the labelling unless they have good reason to do so. It therefore raised concerns about the use of medicines containing botulin as a means of fighting the natural appearance of wrinkles. Products in question ​In Switzerland, three medical products Dysporta, Botoxa and Visabela use botulin as the principle active ingredient and only one of them mentions wrinkles as a possible application. That product is Visabela and it is only recommended for use as a treatment against deep wrinkles. All of the products were classified as one-off treatments.

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