Pre-procedure photographs were taken of all the patients, both while at rest and while contracting their foreheads and eyebrows. Wrinkling was subsequently graded on a five-point scale.
Next, the team the launched a so-called "split face" study, in which the right and left sides of each patient's face were each exposed to one of the drugs. Calculating that the strength ratio of the two drugs is about three-to-one, the researchers injected 10 units of Botox into the crow's feet region of one side of the face, compared with 30 units of Dysport on the other, according to the report.
One month following injection, the patients were asked to contract their muscles as hard as they could, while photographs were again taken.
The result: both the researchers and a majority of patients concurred that Dysport appeared to produce a better outcome. Specifically, two-thirds of the patients expressed a preference for Dysport, ranking Dysport nearly one point higher on the five-point wrinkling scale.
The authors noted, however, that when the patients relaxed their faces there was no appreciable difference between the Dysport and Botox sides.
"Now we want to be careful not to overplay this," stressed Maas. "From our findings, it's clear that there's a better smoothing effect and clearing of lines around the eyes with Dysport. But does that also mean that Dysport is better at achieving the same thing around the mouth or forehead or neck? We really can't make that conclusion."
Maas added that, "the cost of the two amounts respectively are about the same. Maybe actually a little bit less for Dysport, but not substantially less."
He also acknowledged that although the manufacturers of both drugs were approached to support the current investigation, only the maker of Dysport ultimately contributed funding to the effort.
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