I just went to get rid of my frown lines (forehead) they gave me 46 units of Botox, which is equivalent to 2 syringes... does that sound right? I don't understand the term units, and I don't want to get ripped off.
Botox for Frown Lines - How Many Units Are Normal?
Doctor Answers (19)
No rip off here
You weren't ripped off! Trust your surgeon. I have said this before and I will say it again. It doesn't do ANY practitioner ANY good to compromise your result. It's a basic business concept. A satisfied customer will always come back!
The amount of Botox required to treat wrinkles varies from individual to individual.
The amount of Botox required to treat wrinkles varies from individual to individual. In general, I use about 50 units to treat the forehead, glabella, and crow’s feet. Some patients may require more and some less. So, it does not appear that you were overcharged.
Thanks for your question.
Botox Units vs. Areas
It is always preferable to know how many "units" of Botox were used to treat a given area. The pricing is then based on dollars per unit, and you know exactly what you're getting, as well as what you're paying for it, like going to the gas station to fill your tank. A "syringe" means nothing unless you know how many units it contains, and the cost per unit.
I typically use 20 units to treat the "glabellar" frown lines (a.k.a. "11's") between the eyebrows and the root of the nose, and 20 units to treat the horizontal forehead lines. Some patients may require more, or less of a dose, depending on the muscle mass and their sensitivity to the Botox.
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25 units is fairly typical.
For just the frown lines (the corrugator supercilii and procerus muscles), I usually start patients with 25 units. The occasional patient requires more depending on the prominence of the muscles.
"Units" are a standardized dose of Botox, where 1 unit was defined as the LD50 for intraperitoneal injections in mice. The LD50 is the "lethal dose, 50%" which means that 50% of the mice injected with 1 unit of Botox in the abdominal cavity were killed. [And before anyone gets nervous, the LD50 for humans is on the order of 3,000 units--more than a hundred times the dose used in the frown lines!]
In addition, you can't compare treatments by number of syringes or by volume (number of milliliters) since various practitioners reconstitute the Botox to different concentrations. Typical concentrations are 2.5 units/0.1ml, 4 units/0.1ml, and 5 units/0.1ml. I prefer to use 2.5 units/ml so that I can more evenly treat the muscles (10 injection points with smaller doses at each site...but then I also numb the patient first since it is more "shots").
Botox dosing for frown lines
I typically use one syringe (25 units) of Botox for the glabellar frown lines. If this provides insufficient improvement, then a larger dosage of Botox can be used for subsequent injections. 46 units is an unusually large dosage to the glabella for most women, though it is sometimes an appropriate dosage for men (who usually have stronger muscles in this area).
Botox for Frown Lines - How Many Units Are Normal
Giving more Botox units is of no benefit. It is like filling a 50 litre gas tank with 60 litres. The 10 litres will overflow and serve no purpose.
Botox for frown lines
Botox for Frown Lines - How Many Units Are Normal?
The amount of Botox used for frown lines can vary from 25 – 50 units for the forehead, glabella and lateral periorbital areas. Some men have stronger corrugator muscles with more pull and therefore need more units in the glabella area. It is a good idea to follow up with your physician after 2 weeks to assess the effect of the Botox and touch up if needed.
What is a Botox "unit"
Botox units are just a measure of the Botox delivered. Every person requires slightly different amounts. The number of syringes is not an accurate measure since the Botox is diluted in saline to any volume necessary. So there could be more Botox in one syringe of a doctor then 3 syringes from another doctor - depending on how much they dilute the Botox. Most patients start out around 50 units for their first treatment. The effects are then observed and the treatments are fine tuned on subsequent treatments. 46 units just for your forehead is a little high to start with, but if they would also treating the area between your eyebrows, your glabella, they it sounds like they got it just about right. Hopefully you are happy with your results. Good luck.
How many Botox units needed for frown lines
The amount of Botox required to effectively treat the frown area or any area for that matter depends on the strength of the muscles which is determined by a visual examination by the physician - men typically require many more units than women, though some women have a very strong frown complex. At the same time, some patients want a completely frozen area, while others want some movement, so the nuance in dosing is typically best decided by your dermatologist or plastic surgeon.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.