Categories: Health & Fitness

67 cases of botulism reported in Europe (in patients operated on in Turkey)

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The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) warns against botulinum toxin (Botox®) injections for weight loss. 67 cases of botulism have been reported in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Turkey.

Particularly known for the wrinkle treatmentthere botulinum toxin or Botox® is also be used in stomach injections for weight loss. But beware ! In a communicated published on March 14, 2023, the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) reports 67 cases of botulism in patients who have received this type of injection for the purpose of to lose weightoperated between late February and early March 2023. 12 cases were reported in Germany1 case in Austria, 1 case in Switzerland and 53 in Turkey. “60 cases are linked to a private hospital in Istanbul while three cases are linked to a private hospital in Izmir (in Turkey)” specifies the ECDC. THE symptoms “range from mild to severe and several cases were hospitalized. Among those hospitalized, some had to be admitted to intensive care units and received treatment for botulinum toxin.

ECDC encourages “strongly” European citizens to “avoiding intragastric treatments with botulinum toxin for obesity in Turkeyas this is currently associated with a significant risk of botulism”. According to the surveys carried out, the products administered are not approved for the treatment of obesity by intragastric injection. Botulism is a crippling disease. There are several types (food botulism, infant botulism) including iatrogenic botulism which can occur as adverse event following the administration of botulinum toxin for reasons therapeutic (as here against obesity) or cosmetics (wrinkles).

Difficulty breathing should alert

THE symptoms of iatrogenic botulism include weakening of general condition and some fatigue. “The toxicities following therapeutic treatments include difficulty in breathing, indicating a overdose. Toxicities following cosmetic treatment may include blurred vision, droopy eyelids, difficulty swallowing, and dry mouth explains the ECDC. “Even when such treatments are available, full recovery usually takes weeks or even months.”

Source: Botulism cases in Europe following medical interventions with botulinum neurotoxin, ECDC, March 14, 2023

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