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Botox vs. Dysport: Which Should I Use?

Posted December 30, 2010 in Botox and Dysport, Face

Botox (manufactured by Allergan) has been FDA-approved for wrinkle-reduction since 2002.  It is a highly effective product that reduces wrinkles between the eyes (glabella), in the forehead, and in the crows’ feet (smile lines adjacent to the eyes).

Dysport (manufactured by Medicis) was approved by the FDA for wrinkle reduction in April 2009.  It is essentially a variation on Botox with a very similar set of properties.  I use both in our Plano/Frisco office.

Main differences between Botox and Dysport:

  1. Weight: Botox is a heavier-weight molecule than Dysport.  Heavier molecules (Botox) tend to “stay put” while lighter molecules (Dysport) diffuse further from the site of injection.  Why is this important?  It is my impression that Botox is better than Dysport for the corrugator muscles (between the eyebrows), since these are small, strong muscles that need a concentrated dose.  I believe that Dysport is superior to Botox for the orbicularis oculi muscles (that cause crows’ feet wrinkles), since these are large, thin muscles that need a more “spread out” injection.  Either product works well for the frontalis muscle (forehead).
  2. Speed: Dysport is faster.  Effects of Dysport are apparent within 24-48 hours of injection.  Botox usually takes 3-5 days.  So if you have to look good for a reunion in a couple days, you may want to consider Dysport.
  3. Dosing:  25 units of Botox are essentially equivalent to 60 units of Dysport.  When you see physicians price these products by the unit, make sure you understand what they’re talking about.  25 units of Botox for $375 is a good deal.  25 units of Dysport for $325 is a terrible deal.  For more information about our prices on Botox and Dysport, see Botox and Dysport Costs in Plano
  4. Coupons: Botox has a customer loyalty program called Brilliant Distinctions where you can earn points and redeem them for a coupon on your next visit, filler products such as Restylane and Juvederm.

Bottom line:  I like both products.  I usually inject Botox in the glabella (between the eyes) and Dysport in the crows’ feet.  I use them interchangeably in the forehead.  Why? Each product has its proper place (literally), and you get rebates from both manufacturers.

For more information, including before / after Botox photos, please click here.

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Ronald M. Friedman, M.D.

Certified, American Board of Plastic Surgery

Director, West Plano Plastic Surgery Center

Former Chief of Plastic Surgery, Parkland Memorial Hospital, Dallas, Texas

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