If Botox travels to unwanted place, how long until it wears off?

Doctor Answers 14

Botox in unwanted place

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Generally, when it gets into unintended muscle, it does so by infusion, which implies that only a small quantity of toxin makes it there. In this case, the effects are expected to be diminished in effect and duration. It is hard to say how long it will last because of the variables in play, but 2-4 weeks is a safe estimate in most cases

Columbia Plastic Surgeon

If Botox travels to unwanted place, how long until it wears off?

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Thank you for your question. If there is a diffusion of Botox it will last 1-2 weeks. If there was a direct injection into an adjavcent muscle, the effect wcan last 2-4 months.  

Botox diffusion to adjacent muscle(s)

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Dear Juliam0522:

So sorry for your trouble! 

Botox is a injectible liquid medicine which relaxes the targeted muscle by absorption into the nerve ending and blocking the chemical transmitter to the muscle. The liquid may have creeped or diffused to an adjacent muscle. 
It will also block that muscle similarly but without as much of the targeted amount. Therefore, the adjacent muscle will retain some function with some weakness.

The art and science of Botox injection takes talent and skill. Knowledge of the facial muscles and the dynamic balance of the face with the use of muscle relaxer injections is crucial to achieve the desired results.

Thankfully, this is temporary and you will soon have your smile back. If the muscle was injected directly, expect it to take about 3 months for return of function.

If the Botox migrated to this muscle, the effect won’t last as long. 

Options including:
  • waiting for the nerve to regenerate more neurotransmitter (less than 3 months), 
  • visualize the activity of the muscle,
  • hold back activity of the opposite muscle and try to activate the weakened muscle,
  • occasionally, the artful use of filler will improve the appearance.

Please return to your injector or seek a 2nd consultation with a well experienced and Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, ENT Facial Surgeon or Dermatologist to offer their evaluation and recommendations. 

I hope this is helpful. All the best!

Dean P. Kane, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 103 reviews

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Length of Botox Effects

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The length of Botox after injection is 3 to 4 months. I have seen patients that the longevity was either short as 2 months and as long as 6 months.

Good luck

Botox in Unwanted Areas

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Diffusion of Botox into unwanted areas can cause paralysis or weakness of muscles such as the levator muscle that helps open your upper eyelid.  These effects can last anywhere from two weeks to five months.  In the case of the upper eyelid there are eye drops that can be obtained to treat the condition until the Botox wears off.  Consult a board certified Plastic Surgeon who specializes in facial injections who can address all of your concerns. 

F. True Lansden, MD
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Botox traveling to unwanted places

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Botox is a fabulous injection.  However, there are times that Botox can travel by diffusion to an unwanted place. Unfortunately, the results can last weeks to months before the effects dissipate. It is best to consult a board certified dermatologist with a great deal of experience with Botox for the best cosmetic results.

Duration of side effects with Botox.

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Unwanted side effects and complications of neurotoxin use could last up to 4-6 months.  However, in most cases of toxin migration, such as in upper eyelid ptosis, the effects generally last about 1-2 weeks.  Rest assured knowing that these types of complications are rare and usually short–lived.

Brian Harmych, MD
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Traveling Botox

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 The effects of Botox typically last approximately three months. This however varies individually.  Sometimes Botox can last only two months and it can be up to six months. If Botox has migrated to an adjacent muscle the effects usually Start to improve within several weeks..Luckily,  Botox effects are temporary and will be reversed completely with time.Also, this does not mean it will happen the next time you have Botox.

Joanne Lopes, MD
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Botox side effects

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Generally the duration of botox is 3 months but you will start to see some return of movement even before that

James Chan, MD
Portland Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 60 reviews


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Hi Juliam0522,
Sorry you are experiencing this effect from Botox.  Botox duration varies from person to person.  The duration of Botox itself can last anywhere between 3-6 months.  Since the Botox migrated into a different area it is hard to say how long it will last.  Eventually the Botox will wear off.   Best Regards!

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.