Attention Savannah, Hilton Head, Bluffton and Statesboro
We now have an alternative to Botox. It is a product called Dysport, made by Medicis, the makers of Restylane. It is basically a botulinum product that relaxes muscles causing wrinkles such as the frown lines, the forehead furrows, and “crow’s feet.” Both Botox and Dysport are very effective and typically results last three to four months. In my experience in my practice in Savannah, if one gets injections once every three months for about a year, the injected muscle atrophies, which is good, and then injections can be done effectively every five to six months. A comparison would be having a cast on one’s arm following a fracture. When the cast comes off, the arm looks much smaller. This is from atrophy secondary to lack of use. Time and studies will reveal Dysport’s longevity compared to Botox. My early experience shows minimal discomfort compared to Botox. Also, competition historically leads to lower prices.
As a matter of interest, Botulinum toxin is a neurotoxin protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. More specifically, Botulinum is a neuromuscular blocking agent, which means it causes paralysis of the injected muscle by preventing the release of acetylcholine from motor nerve to the involved muscle. Without its nerve supply, the muscle cannot contract and withers away or atrophies. These agents can also be used to reduce the sympathetic nerve supply to sweat glands, such as those in the arm pit. Thus it can be used effectively to reduce arm pit sweating. Although by far the most common use of these agents is for cosmetic use, originally they were used to treat muscle spasms such as blepharospasm (spasms of the eyelids), strabismus (squint), cervical dystonia (torticollis of the neck) and spasticity due to cerebral palsy or other muscular diseases.