Botox® Experiences - Catherine Landis
I received my first Botox® treatment about 15 minutes after being diagnosed
with HFS. I was so excited that I had finally made it to the right place,
"Doheny Eye Institute" in Los Angeles, CA, and that Dr. Steve Feldon knew
exactly what was wrong with me. No more blaming it on stress or a nervous
When he advised me that it was treatable by Botox® or brain surgery
(an incision behind the left ear and they go through your skull) I opted for
the Botox® without hesitation.
Having turned 40 in July 2001, and feeling like I was falling apart for the last 2 years, I knew all about Botox® for wrinkle treatments. Besides developing HFS at about 38, I had also developed Rosacia, a reddening of the skin, and was being treated with laser resurfacing for that as well as having my spider veins injected with a solution to clear them out. I had a pinched nerve in my left shoulder after I started doing some weight training and had to have physical therapy and had been seeing a chiropractor on and off since I was 17 for neck pain.
I told my husband my 401 K fund was going to turn into a Catherine maintenance fund from here on out. Anyhow, needles were no problem to me and I was given 6 injections around my left eye and 1 in the cheek. I drove straight back to work very excited that I wasn't going to feel the spasms anymore. I believe it was about a day before the spasms were not felt at all however the 6 injections around my eyes was too much and my eye was now tearing because all the muscle control was temporarily lost. I wasn't blinking and didn't realize this for a day or so. My eye would shut when I went to sleep but not all the way. Because of this the tear ducts went into overdrive and produced tears constantly. I kept a Kleenex in my hand for about two days. My Dr. advised that putting natural teardrops in the eye would stop the tearing and sure enough it did. My face was very lopsided, however. The Botox® eye was very young looking, I loved it but it didn't match the other eye and my smile was crooked but I thought I could live with this because it was much better than the spasms. The first treatment lasted from July 2001 until December 2001.
When I went in for my 2nd treatment I had a new Doctor and I advised him that I had been given way too much Botox® and to please cut it back. I also advised him that I wanted to explore the surgery option. He didn't give me any more information on the surgery other than they don't do it there and I could contact UCLA or Cedars Sinai and see if a Doctor there did it. I had my second treatment with no problem with my eye this time but my mouth now droops on one side and I found myself drooling out of the corner of my mouth during the day. I decided that was enough Botox®. I don't want to go through this every 3 months for the next 40 to 50 years and who knows what the long term effects of Botox® are?
I knew I wanted the surgery and am currently working on scheduling a surgery date. The neurosurgeon who is going to do the surgery at USC advised me that he is glad he caught me before I had a 3rd or 4th Botox® treatment because he felt that I had a better chance of having a symmetrical face again, than if I had continued with the Botox®. I don't know how many times I have been asked over the last two years what was wrong with my eye, my face and if I had a stroke of some kind. I am very eager to have the MVD surgery and get on with my life again.
Permission granted the HFSA to post Botox® Experience on website.
Catherine Landis, February 08, 2002
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