Before it became known as the wrinkle-smoothing treatment Botulinum Toxin (more commonly known as Botox) had a long and complicated history. Seven million Botox injections administered in 2017 alone—but how did the phenomenon begin?

To best understand the journey of this neurotoxic protein, we must look at its timeline:


Botulinum Toxin was first described as “sausage poison” or “fatty poison” by German physician and poet Dr. Justinus Kerner, due to its association with badly prepared or handled meat products. In studies published that year, Dr. Kerner reported the toxin could interrupt motor signal transmission in the peripheral and autonomic system and also that Botulinum Toxin could be lethal in small doses.


In the coming decades, the United States would try to weaponize this toxin for use in both World War I and World War II. However, in 1928, two scientists names P. Tessmer Snipe and Hermann Sommer purified the toxin, thus creating a safe substance that could be used for therapeutic purposes.


This year British physiologist and pharmacologist Arnold Burgen would find that botulinum toxin could block neuromuscular transmission.


In 1968, ophthalmologist Alan Scott and Edward Schantz began developing standardized medical injections using botulinum toxin type-A, which he eventually used in experiments on monkeys.


By this time Dr. Scott started using the refined toxin to treat two eye conditions: strabismus (aka crossed eyes) and blepharospasm (extreme blinking). When injected into the stronger eye of his cross-eyed patients, the toxin creates a minor muscular paralysis, and the other eye became stronger. This was similar to how optometrists would use eye patches for patients suffering from lazy eyes—weakening one to increase the function of the other.


BoNT-A (aka Botox) became FDA approved in 1989, initially for use on medical conditions like strabismus, blepharospasm and hemifacial spasms. This was also the year the cosmetic smoothing effect of Botox was first documented, by the Carruthers husband and wife team from Canada, BC. Kean Carruthers is an ophthalmologist and her husband Alistair is a dermatologist.


Botox becomes approved by the FDA for cosmetic purposes. Since then it has also been passed for other uses such as excessive underarm sweating and achalasia (a spasm occurring in the esophagus).


Nearly 200 years after its initial discovery, botulinum toxin is still very much in use. Thousands of expertly trained doctors around the world, Dr. Brace included, provide botulinum toxin injections to their patients on a weekly basis. Along with cosmetic reasons, Dr. Brace successfully treats those who suffer from migraines or excessive sweating with quality Botox injections.

Dr. Brace is a top cosmetic and reconstructive surgeon practicing in Guelph, Ontario. He trained extensively in and provided treatments with cosmetic and therapeutic Botox as well as hyaluronic acid facial fillers. Dr. Brace is well-known for his extreme dedication to providing his patients natural-looking results and encouraging educated decisions.

In his repertoire of cosmetic injectables, Dr. Brace works with two formulations of botulinum toxin: Botox and Dysport. Both of these Health Canada approved treatments can be used for a multitude of skin-smoothing purposes; crows feet, deep-set wrinkles, frown lines and laugh lines. They are equally effective for medical purposes such as excessive sweating, migraines, muscular disorders, and some bladder and bowel disorders. As one of the top surgeons in his field, Dr. Brace is well versed in all uses of botulinum toxin.

To learn more about Guelph Facial Plastics’ Botulinum Toxin treatments, book your consultation with Dr. Brace today.

Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients,

All in-office treatments, procedures, and appointments have resumed. At Guelph Facial Plastics we are committed to protecting the safety of our patients, staff, and the general public while maintaining our high standard of quality care. As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we have made the following changes to our patient care practices in accordance with all provincial and Public Health recommendations:

  • We will be pre-screening all patients that are scheduled to come into our office. We will ask patients to stay home with symptoms of COVID-19, chronic lung disease, severe asthma, serious heart conditions, and uncontrolled type 1 diabetes.
  • The timing of patient visits has been adjusted in order to limit the number of people in the office at a given time and to allow for enhanced disinfecting and cleaning protocols we have put in place in between patients. We have also enhanced the air filtration quality in our space to provide patients with surgically clean air.
  • You must call from your vehicle upon arrival before entering the clinic. We request that patients come on their own to all appointments unless absolutely necessary. For your safety, all of our staff will be wearing masks when interacting with patients in the office and routine hand-washing is required.
  • We request that you wear a mask. Hand sanitation stations will be available upon entering and throughout the office.
  • We are pleased to continue to offer virtual visits as an option for non-urgent appointments.
  • Cosmetic surgery has not resumed at Guelph General Hospital, however, we are pleased to offer our patients the option of undergoing surgery at a Clinic 360 - a fully-equipped private surgical center.

We look forward to continuing to help our patients look and feel their best! We encourage you to reach out to our office now to schedule your appointment.

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