Dysport is a prescription drug that has become a popular alternative to Botox. Approved in the US since 2009, Dysport eliminates wrinkles and frown lines on the forehead. Results are long-lasting, but require touch-up treatments every 6 months or so.
Like Botox, Dysport acts as a mild paralytic for facial muscles. When we smile, frown, or laugh, “expression” wrinkles form on our foreheads. Over time, these wrinkles can grow deep and unsightly. Dysport neutralizes the muscles that pull on facial skin to form wrinkles and creases.
Dysport works best on dynamic wrinkles in the brow and forehead area. Patients who can stretch out their wrinkles with gentle pressure will probably see significant results. Those with poor skin tone or deep, static wrinkles might require a surgical face lift to achieve a younger appearance.
The Differences Between Dysport and Botox
Though Dysport is so similar to Botox that it has been called “Botox’s cousin”, there are some significant differences in the way Dysport works.
First, Dysport injections spread to a wider area than Botox injections. Botox affects, on average, facial muscles within 1 cm of the injection site. Dysport has a range three times as wide, making it possible to achieve the same results with fewer injections.
Second, Dysport contains more protein than Botox. Protein is broken down slowly by the human body, which could mean that Dysport lasts longer than Botox. Some doctors believe that prescription-strength zinc supplements can prolong the effects even more.
So far, longevity studies have turned up mixed results. Many patients retain their youthful appearance for 6 – 12 months with Dysport, compared to an average of 3 months with Botox. In any case, doctors recommend waiting at least 90 days between Dysport treatments.
Finally, Dysport produces results more rapidly than Botox. Dysport patients often notice a reduction in wrinkles within 1 – 2 days, while it takes 3 – 4 days to see noticeable effects from Botox injections.
While Dysport is sometimes marketed as a cheaper alternative to Botox, the truth is that it takes a larger quantity of Dysport to produce the same rejuvenating effects as Botox. Ounce for ounce, Dysport costs roughly 1/3 of the price of Botox, but Dysport is also a more diluted substance. In the end, the treatments are usually about the same price.
The best candidates for Dysport treatment are patients in good general health, who do not have medical conditions which affect their muscles or nerves. Patients with asthma or diabetes should seek their doctor’s approval before going ahead with Dysport treatments.
There are some side effects associated with Dysport. Like Botox, Dysport can cause redness, swelling, and bruising at the injection sites. There is also a slim chance of allergic reaction, as with any injectable treatment. People who are allergic to cow’s milk should not be treated with Dysport.
If you experience more severe side effects, such as headache or nausea, tell your doctor immediately so that they can advise you. Ice and over the counter pain medicines are usually sufficient to treat swelling and bruising.
If you think you’d be a good candidate for Dysport, set up a consultation with your cosmetic surgeon. They will evaluate your health and your expectations, and help you choose the best treatment to suit your needs.
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