Botox Effect on Pregnancy

I got both Botox and dermal filler before finding out that I was pregnant for 4 weeks. Would this effect the unborn baby?

Doctor Answers 12

Botox Effect on Pregnancy

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Hi fleecy,

There must have been thousands of women like you who received cosmetic Botox before they found out that they were pregnant. I am sure that we would have heard about a cause and effect relationship if there was one. Unfortunately, there are far too many babies more each day with birth defects to women who never even thought about Botox.

A retired OB-GYN recently shared that early in his career of delivering babies, when sadly there was a problem, it was thought to be related nature, or to G-d, or to fate. Over the last half of his career, there always had to something or someone to blame for an unfavorable outcome.

There was a recent report actually from "down under" about one woman whose infant had hearing and seeing problems; she had Botox early in her pregnancy.

I most strongly do not believe that one case out of tens of thousands of woman who had Botox before they knew they were pregnant makes for a cause and effect relationship that is worth another moment of your minds worries. Do share your concerns with your physician who is taking care of your pregnancy.

I wish you a healthy pregnancy with a smooth delivery and most of all a healthy new baby in your family. Be well

Good Day,

Dr. P

Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

No, Botox will not affect pregnancy

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Botox is a locally active agent. Meaning it is injected and acts on the muscle it is injected to. Although it will diffuse mildly into the surrounding muscles, unless it is injected directly into a vein it will not cause problems systemically. Remember botox is a paralytic so if it gets into your system other things will stop working first.

Pregnancy and Botox

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Hi Fleecy,

Although Botox and dermal fillers are not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding patients, there is no proven connection between any problems with the fetus and these products. Botox remains very localized after injection and has very little if any systemic effects (internal effects) because of the low dosages associated with Botox Cosmetic. Many dermal fillers such as Restylane Juvederm and Perlane use Hyaluronic Acid, a naturally occurring compound in the body.

Not to worry, all should be well with your baby. But avoid any unnecessary cosmetic treatments while pregnant from here on out. Good luck with the pregnancy.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

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Botox and pregnancy

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This is nearly impossible to quantify.

Remember that botox is derived from the bacterial byproduct that was intially known to occur commonly in canned vegetables and fruits. In very high doses this caused Botulism and in rare instances even death. However, in reality, I am sure that people and pregnant women have been exposed to this in considerably lower doses wihout ill effects.

The doses used in Botox are exceptionally small. Generally the medication is taken up by nerve endings in the area of injection and it tends to stay localized without access to the systemic circulation where it could pass to the placenta.

More recently some concern was created when an aniumal study showed that the nerves may pass the Botox to the Central Nervous System. However, the effects of this were unknown.

Overall, there is very little evidence to suggest that Botox, in the doses used for your cosmetic improvement, would have any detrimental or long term effects on the development of the fetus. Of course you should discuss this with your obstetrician. Be rest assured that Botox has a relatively high safety profile.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Botox and pregnancy

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Obviously an expectant mother should not receive Botox or fillers. Why take even the smallest chance with the new baby?

However in your situation, there was probably no damage done, at least as far as any reports I have ever read or come across. Botox is quickly protein bound and there is no evidence it crosses the placental barrier to damage the fetus.

I certainly would not get an ulcer worrying about something that you can't do anything about now, and is probably a non-issue!

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 195 reviews

Botox and pregnancy

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Thank you for your question. I would not worry too much if you had Botox/fillers and found out you were pregnant. Botox/fillers works locally where it was injected and the dosing is very small. The makers of Botox/fillers would never consider sponsoring a study to see the safety of Botox/fillers during pregnancy or breast feeding as it would be too risky for them. Likewise, for physicians. I generally provide reassurance for situations like yours and I do recommend that you stop any future injectable treatments until either the baby is born or until after breast feeding. I would also let you OB know that you had a Botox/filler treatment during pregnancy so they are aware.

It's Best to Avoid Botox During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding

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Because no formal testing has been done for Botox in pregnant women, no one can actually answer that question, although there is a very small study of women who did receive Botox while pregnant and there were no effects to their children. While there are no official reports of adverse consequences, experts do not feel it is possible to say that it is definitively safe.  An experienced professional would not recommend the application during pregnancy, and until one has finished breastfeeding.

The best advice in this circumstance is to speak with your obstetrician and obtain their recommendation and guidance.

Steven Svehlak, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Botox and pregnancy

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Congratulations on your pregnancy.   While it is highly unlikely that Botox will cause any long term problems because it acts locally, no one knows for sure.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Not a cause for worry.

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At this point it is not a cause for worry. Botox should not be injected in pregnant women, but this is just a precaution and there is no established or documented issues with incidental Botox injections. Good luck.

Dont worry

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It is unlikely that there will be a problem. Now that you know you are pregnant, just take prudent precautions. I wouldn't go for more Botox or other elective procedures until after delivery.

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.