Definition and Overview

Wrinkles are a natural part of a human's ageing process. They are usually caused by a type of fibrosis (the thickening and scarring of connective tissue) that involves the incorrect repairs of injuries in the collagen and elastic fibres. As the body’s healing capabilities decline due to ageing, the repeated extensions and compressions of the skin are not repaired properly, resulting in loose, inelastic skin.

As the individual ages, collagen levels steeply decline because the body cannot produce the same amount of tissue as it did during the person’s younger years. Broken elastic tissue fibres, especially when extended, are typically replaced by longer collagen fibres that result in stiffer and looser tissues that create folds in the skin. These folds are permanent wrinkles, which can be treated using various methods including Dysport injections, a wrinkle treatment that uses botulinum toxin to prevent the formation of wrinkles.

Who Should Undergo and Expected Results

While wrinkles are natural, some can form early in a person’s life due to various factors, including prolonged exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Deep wrinkles in the forehead, between the eyebrows, and around the eyes and mouth can result in an angry or sad expression, even if the individual is not feeling such emotions.

There are different types of wrinkle treatments with wrinkle creams being the most common. These creams are applied directly to the skin to stimulate the production of collagen and restore the treatment area's appearance. Dermal fillers can also be injected directly into the skin to correct wrinkles and other such depressions. They are known as "volumisers" plumping and lifting cheeks, temples, and jawlines and filling out thin lips, and plumping sagging hands.

Botulinum toxin is another type of wrinkle treatment, which uses the neurotoxin protein produced by Clostridium botulinum, a type of bacteria. Manufactured by pharmaceutical company Ipsen, Dysport is an injectible wrinkle treatment that uses botulinum toxin to immobilise the muscles that cause the formation of wrinkles and prevent them from contracting. The toxin effectively blocks signals from the brain, disconnecting it from specific muscles.

Compared to another popular product in the market called Botox, Dysport contains less toxic proteins surrounding the active molecules that deliver the desired results. This means that Dysport can deliver results sooner compared to Botox, and can make the transition between untreated and treated areas less noticeable, creating a more natural appearance.

Dysport injections are also injected deeper compared to Botox, which allows the molecules to spread further, at around two centimetres more. Compared to other forms of wrinkle treatments, Dysport delivers longer-lasting results, providing a more youthful appearance without the tightness that prevents an individual from expressing various emotions on his or her face.

Healthy individuals with wrinkles who do not respond to topical treatments are considered ideal for Dysport injections, especially if they are looking for results that last a bit longer than dermal fillers. They should also not be allergic to botulinum toxin, or have any medical condition that can be complicated or exacerbated by the ingredients in Dysport.

It is best to consult with a qualified medical professional before having Dysport injections.

Patients who have taken advantage of Dysport injections can begin to notice the results as soon as a day after the treatment. The results can last up to 13 months in some patients, though statistics show that the average “life span” of a Dysport treatment is between four and six months.

How is the Procedure Performed?

The Dysport injection procedure is relatively straightforward. Following a consultation with a doctor to assess the patient’s suitability for the treatment, the session can be immediately scheduled.

The target area will be thoroughly cleaned to remove make-up or surface oils before the injection sites are marked. The whole session takes approximately 15 minutes.

The patient can immediately resume normal activities after the session and the results can be observed one to seven days after.

Once the effects of the toxin start to wear off after four to six months, the patient can get the same injections to continuously enjoy the benefits of the treatment.

Possible Risks and Complications

Dysport injections are generally safe, though there are rare instances where patients experience side effects. Some report experiencing headaches right after, which goes away after a couple of hours.

A rare side effect is droopy eyes, which is often reported by patients who have not gone to qualified medical professionals prior to the treatment. It is crucial that a licensed professional performs Dysport injections in a safe and sterile environment, especially since this type of dermal injection penetrates more deeply compared to Botox and dermal fillers.

When administered properly, Dysport injections do not result in injury, infection, and other complications at the target site. It is best to listen to the after-treatment care guidelines that the doctor will provide to ensure long-lasting results.

References:

  • Montecucco C, Molgó J (June 2005). "Botulinal neurotoxins: revival of an old killer". Current Opinion in Pharmacology 5 (3): 274–9.

  • Arnon SS, Schechter R, Inglesby TV, Henderson DA, Bartlett JG, Ascher MS, Eitzen E, Fine AD, Hauer J, Layton M, Lillibridge S, Osterholm MT, O'Toole T, Parker G, Perl TM, Russell PK, Swerdlow DL, Tonat K (February 2001). "Botulinum toxin as a biological weapon: medical and public health management". Jama 285 (8): 1059–70

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