Can Botox in my face cause numbness in my thumb?

On Thursday, October 20th, I had Botox injected into my glabella and forehead and crow's feet. It started "kicking in" this weekend and now (Monday) is in full effect. On Saturday, October 22, I woke up with a numb thumb (the outside and base of my right thumb). It didn't go away so I went to chiropractor today (found nothing) and scheduled an appt. with a neurologist. I can't figure out why my thumb would suddenly go numb overnight then it dawned on me that it coincided with the Botox taking effect.

Doctor Answers 22

Numbness in Thumb after Botox

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Botox will not cause numbness in your thumb. I advise you to keep your appointment with the neurologist to determine the numbness you are experiencing. 

Summit Emergency Medicine Physician

Numbness thumb after Botox

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Placement of Botox in the forehead does not affect sensation in the thumb. A neurologist should be able to assist in locating the cause of your symptoms. Good luck.

Botox and numbness in fingers

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No, your recent Botox injection almost certainly has nothing to do with the numbness in your fingers. I would followup with your primary care doctor to discuss other causes for the numbness you are experiencing. 

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Can Botox in my face cause numbness in my thumb?

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There is no correlation between Botox injections in the face and numbness in your thumb. Botox is injected directly into the muscle, blocking the release of a neurotransmitter responsible for causing the muscle to contract, therefore that muscle becomes paralyzed for approximately 3-4 months.

Neil Sadick, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Botox causing numbeness in fingers?

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Botox works on the motor function of muscles by "relaxing" the muscles; in otherwards weakening the muscles that are injected. Glabellar injection has no sensory effect on your thumb or fingers whatsoever. 

Ram Chandra, MD
Edison Physician

Botox Cosmetic Works Only On Motor Nerves To Relax Muscles

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A motor nerve is a nerve that stimulates muscle contractions. A sensory nerve is a nerve that transmits sensations (temperature, pressure, pain etc). The motor nerve communicates with its corresponding muscle at what is called the neuromuscular junction. To initiate a muscle contraction, a signal is sent down the nerve cell. When that signal reaches the end of the nerve cell (the nerve terminal), a chemical (neurotransmitter) is released from the nerve terminal. This neurotransmitter stimulates the muscle cells to contract.

Botox works by interrupting the communication between the motor nerve and muscle, thereby reducing or eliminating the muscle contraction. The Botox molecule binds to a specific receptor at the very end of the nerve cell (the nerve terminal). The Botox molecule is taken up by the nerve cell, and through a series of actions Botox blocks the release of the neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) from the nerve terminal. When the neurotransmitter is not released, the nerve cannot cause the muscle to contract, and as a result the muscle relaxes.

The binding of Botox is irreversible, so the effect of Botox disappears as the Botox molecule degrades.

Botox works only on motor nerves that stimulate the contraction of muscles. Botox does not work on sensory nerves, so it does not cause numbness or other sensory changes.

When used as recommended for the treatment of facial lines and wrinkles, Botox  is administered in small doses and small volumes - so it acts very locally.

So, rest assured that Botox injections for your facial lines and wrinkles did not cause numbness in your thumb. That numbness is likely cause by some nerve compression in either your neck, arm, or wrist. Best wishes

Kenneth Dembny, II, MD
Milwaukee Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Botox and numbness

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Botox can't cause any numbness in your thumbs. Its mechanism of action just doesn't work this way.  Please consult your neurologist for other possibilities such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Best regards.

Edward Fruitman M.D.

Trifecta Med Spa. NYC


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It's wise that you are meeting with a neurologist.  I've never heard of any association of Botox with numbness or any symptoms in the extremities.

Good luck!

Reza Tirgari, MD
San Diego Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Botox and thumb numbness

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You should meet with your neurologist as scheduled. The Botox will not cause this effect and it is more likely that you may have carpal tunnel syndrome. I would not worry about the Botox causing this.

Pamela Stuart, MD
San Jose Physician


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Botox in the forehead does not cause numbness on the extremities. The numbness in your thumb, may be from other reasons. The most common will be some pressure over the median nerve, this from a repetitive action on your wrist or forearm, also can be from sleeping over the arm or forearm during the night, etc. Check with a neurologist for a better evaluation.

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.