Patients can decrease the frequency of Botox Cosmetic injections after approximately two years and still receive most of the same wrinkle-smoothing cosmetic benefits, according to new research at Oregon Health & Science University.
"After two years of treatment at recommended intervals, patients can potentially cut the frequency, and thus the cost, of their Botox treatments by half," said Roger A. Dailey, M.D., F.A.C.S., professor and Lester Jones Endowed Chair of oculofacial plastic surgery in the OHSU School of Medicine. The results of Dailey's work were presented at a meeting of American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeon on April 24 in Washington, D.C. The research was sponsored by an unrestricted educational grant from Allergen, Inc., the maker of Botox Cosmetic.
The Botox research effort also demonstrated that the injections have a wrinkle preventing - or prophylactic - effect. Patients who begin receiving injections between their 30s and 50s are able to prevent wrinkles from forming and eliminate existing wrinkles, said Dailey, head of the Casey Aesthetic Facial Surgery Center, which opened in 1991 as part of Casey Eye Institute.
Based on previous studies, doctors advised patients who wished to reduce wrinkles in the glabellar region - the area between the eyebrows - that they needed to have Botox Cosmetic injections every three months to maintain the cosmetic wrinkle-smoothing benefits. Such frequent treatment, however, deterred some patients, Dailey said.
Dailey studied 50 women ages 30 to 50, who received regular Botox injections for two years. "We found that after the patient receives Botox Cosmetic injections every four months for two years, the frequency of the injections can be changed to every six months and still achieve good results," Dailey said. "This demonstrates patients have the ability to achieve good results with broader treatment schedules and ultimately at a lower overall treatment cost.
Botox has been approved for cosmetic use for eight years. In 2008, more than 5 million patients in the United States received cosmetic Botox treatments, according to Allergen, the manufacturer. About 313,000 of those patients were men.