Neuromodulators (BOTOX® Cosmetic / Dysport® / Xeomin®)

What are Neuromodulators?

Neuromodulators Calgary | BOTOX Calgary

Neuromodulators, such as Botox Cosmetic and Dysport, are commonly used today as a safe, less invasive, and less expensive option to combat lines and creases in the face. They are comprised primarily of Botulinum Toxin A which diminishes small muscle contraction, which reduces the appearance of unwanted lines and crease.

Neuromodulators last for approximately 4 to 6 months and therefore require maintenance visits. It is important to achieve a “Natural Not Frozen” look so during your initial consultation, an individualized plan will be formulated prior to treatment. It is important to note that Neuromodulators should not be used if pregnant or breastfeeding!

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Before & After Neuromodulator Injection Photos

What Areas of the Body Can Neuromodulators Treat?

Neuromodulators only work on the upper third of the face. This is where we form “dynamic wrinkles” due to muscle contractions. These are crow’s feet at the outside of the eyes, the 11s between our eyebrows, and forehead lines. Neuromodulators don’t work on the other type of wrinkle, called “static wrinkles.” These wrinkles are caused by sun damage, declining collagen production, personal habits such as smoking, and other factors. Static wrinkles show themselves at all times. Neuromodulators do not work on these wrinkles; they must be filled from beneath with dermal fillers.

What are the Benefits of Neuromodulators?

When we make expressions, such as frowning, showing surprise, or squinting, we engage the muscles on the upper third of our face. Go ahead, make a frown. You can feel these muscles work. Over time, as we repeat these expressions thousands of times and our skin thins with age, wrinkles begin to form on the skin above these muscles. Neuromodulators, by stopping these muscles from contracting, stop these wrinkles from forming.

Patient Testimonial

“I just received fillers and botox from Dr. Todd Remington for the first time and my experience was incredible… He took the time to ask me what my expectations were and explained that his main goal was to achieve a very natural look which I appreciate. The procedure took place with Dr. Remington and his very kind nurse Tracy. It was fairly painless and I felt very comfortable. He takes great pride in preforming lip enhancements and it shows! He is amazing at it and I am so happy with the results. If you are looking for a doctor to preform any kind of botox, fillers, ect you need to book an appointment with Dr. Todd Remington. – Julianne B.

How Do Neuromodulators Work?

Young female model with curly hair

Neuromodulators are made from the botulinum toxin type A, the same bacteria that can cause botulism. Back in the 1950s, scientists discovered that when injected in very minute amounts into a muscle, the botulinum toxin would temporarily paralyze that muscle, stopping it from contracting. That led to the development of Botox, which was first approved to treat involuntary eyelid spasms.

Neuromodulators work by blocking the nerve messages sent from the muscles to the brain. When a muscle is injected with a neuromodulator, the brain no longer receives nerve messages to contract the muscle, so it stays at rest. When it comes to wrinkles on the upper third of the face that form because of muscle contractions beneath the skin, if the muscle stays relaxed the wrinkle on the surface skin no longer forms.

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What Results Can I Expect from Neuromodulators?

Because they have to get to work blocking the nerve messages, neuromodulators don’t provide immediate results. It usually takes from 3-4 days for the neuromodulator to fully relax the muscle and erase the wrinkle above it.

What is the Recovery from Neuromodulator Injections?

These procedures were the original “lunchtime” procedure. This is because these treatments take just 10-15 minutes and the patient can go right back to work or other normal activities. There is no downtime.The one thing that is important after your injections, however, is to not rub the injection sites for the first 24 hours. This can cause the neuromodulator to migrate to an unwanted muscle and create unwanted effects, such as a droopy eyelid.

Are Neuromodulators Safe?

Injections of neuromodulators, Botox in particular, have been the most popular cosmetic procedures performed around the world since 2002 (when the FDA in the U.S. approved Botox for cosmetic use). Over that time, they have been injected millions of times and have proven to be safe and effective. The common side effects are slight swelling and redness at the injection sites. Some patients get a slight headache for the first day or so.

Are neuromodulators painful?

Neuromodulator injections can feel slightly uncomfortable, but patients rarely describe this treatment as painful. We use a very small needle to administer injectable products like Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin, to patients can expect to feel only a subtle pinch, if anything at all.

“I have been a patient of Dr Remington for 5 years and every visit has provided incredible results. Both Dr. Remington & his staff operate at the highest level providing fantastic care, knowledge and professionalism ” – L.M.

Are There Side Effects to Neuromodulators?

Potential side effects include pain at the injection site, infection, inflammation, swelling, redness, bleeding and bruising. Some of these symptoms may indicate an allergic reaction, however, this is exceedingly rare. Other allergy type symptoms are itching, wheezing, asthma, a rash, red welts, dizziness and faintness.

It is also possible for neuromodulators to spread a little beyond the intended injection site and affect surrounding tissues. For example, if you receive injections into the forehead close to your eyebrows or your upper eyelids, they could be affected and may droop temporarily.

Does Insurance Cover Neuromodulator Treatment?

Insurance companies may offer coverage for the above treatments. In such cases, you would pick up your prescription and bring to the clinic for treatment, paying only an injection fee at that time. If you do not have insurance, the cost is calculated according to the amount of product required for your treatment.

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Neuromodulators FAQs


What’s the difference between Botox, Dysport & Xeomin?

These three neuromodulators all work the same way. Each blocks the nerve impulses in muscles to soften their contraction for a short time. How they work is similar. Their formulation, however, is different. Botox has larger particles of botulinum toxin A as well as an accessory protein (egg or dairy). Dysport also has an accessory protein similar to Botox. However, particle sizes are slightly smaller, which may affect dosing. Studies suggest that Dysport may also have a faster onset than its competitors. Finally, Xeomin is formulated without any accessory proteins. This allows the particles to migrate the farthest away from injection points, also affecting dosing as well as injection technique.

The results of each of these drugs are similar in terms of timing. Patients may need touch-ups approximately every 4 to 6 months regardless of the product they choose. It is always important to tell your provider if you have undergone neuromodulator treatment in the past few months and which product was used.

Who is a good candidate for Botox?

Botox is a common injectable cosmetic used to treat the signs of aging in adults of all ages. Older patients may receive treatment to smooth existing lines and creases. Younger patients are also turning to Botox and other neuromodulators to “pre-treat” areas in which dynamic wrinkles typically form. For example, a person with no permanent frown lines may have minute doses of a neuromodulator injected to prevent these lines from developing. People with neuromuscular disorders may not be good candidates for Botox or other neuromodulators.

Who is a good candidate for Dysport?

Dysport is used to correct the signs of aging that are commonly addressed with Botox. In addition to smoothing crow’s feet, Dysport has been shown to achieve excellent results treating moderate to severe frown lines. Adults who are interested in reducing the signs of aging caused by facial expression may be good candidates for Dysport. It is important to have realistic expectations and to alert your provider if you have had an adverse reaction to Botox or any other neuromodulator in the past. Because the active ingredient is the same, there is a risk that the same reaction could occur.

Who is a good candidate for Xeomin?

Healthy adults are often good candidates for Xeomin, the “naked” neuromodulator. People who have developed resistance to Botox or Dysport may be interested in trying Xeomin because, without the accessory protein, this drug may not provoke the formation of antibodies to work against it. If you have had an adverse reaction to other neuromodulators, you may not be a good candidate for Xeomin.

We conduct a thorough consultation with each patient to ensure that we achieve the desired outcome most safely and effectively possible. If you are not a good candidate for neuromodulator injections, other options can be discussed to help you look and feel your best.

What are the pros & cons of Botox injections?

Botox offers the advantage of being one of the most well-known professional wrinkle treatments. It’s long history of use provides a sense of confidence in its safety and efficacy. Beyond being a prominent brand, Botox is advantageous in the areas of convenience and proven results. Few adverse reactions have been reported by patients who have received treatment from this and other neuromodulators. Over time, some people notice that they no longer get the same degree of improvement they once did from Botox. This can happen when the body makes antibodies against the accessory proteins present in the drug.

What are the pros & cons of Dysport injections?

Research suggests that Dysport migrates slightly farther than Botox due to smaller particle sizes. This can be an advantage in terms of results and the amount of product needed to smooth lines and creases. Studies have also indicated that Dysport may achieve results in patients who have built up natural resistance to Botox. Because Dysport can spread to a wider area, this drug must be administered with great care to avoid unwanted side effects.

What are the pros & cons of Xeomin injections?

Xeomin is a convenient treatment that is completed in less than 30 minutes. Different than Botox and Dysport, this drug has no accessory protein surrounding particles of botulinum toxin. This can be advantageous because it may reduce the risk of natural resistance and allergic reaction. Being a “pure” version of botulinum toxin, Xeomin may migrate farther from the area of injection, working quickly and effectively to smooth wrinkles. This tendency to migrate can also be a disadvantage. Patients must undergo Xeomin injections from a board-certified provider who is familiar with this drug and can administer it properly so adverse effects such as eyelid ptosis do not occur.

What should first be done before considering neuromodulators?

If you are considering neuromodulator treatment to reduce concerns like dynamic wrinkles, schedule a consultation with a board-certified physician. The team at Remington Laser Dermatology Centre can help you understand how our various neuromodulators work. Our consultation process is thorough and will answer any questions you have about the best ways to refresh your appearance.

Can I Pair Other Procedures With Cosmetic Injections?

These injections affect only the muscle they are injected into. This means you can have other procedures, such as laser treatments for sun spots, at the same time. You shouldn’t have other procedures on the upper third of the face; that’s the only limitation.

Medical Uses of Neuromodulators

Neuromodulators, such as Botox Therapeutic, have multiple uses in addition to aesthetics. These include treatment for:

  • Migraine headaches
  • Hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating)
  • Bell’s Palsy

Neuromodulators For Migraines

Migraine headaches can be debilitating and can negatively affect daily living. Botox Therapeutic has been proven very effective in helping to relieve pain associated with migraine headaches, allowing patients to resume a normal life. After a complete exam and medical clearance from your family doctor, small injections are made into target areas contributing to the headaches during a short clinic visit.

Most often, patients resume their day with no limitations other than avoiding high-intensity exercise for 24 hours. Treatments are repeated about every 3 months.

*Medical clearance from your family doctor is mandatory prior to treatment for migraines.

Hyperhidrosis (Excessive Sweating)

Hyperhidrosis can occur under the arms, on the face, scalp, palms of hands and soles of feet. This condition can also be treated with neuromodulators (such as Botox Therapeutic). With the aid of topical numbing cream prior to treatment, tiny needles are used to inject just underneath the skin into identified sweat zones. Most patients return to their normal day after treatment but it can depend upon the zone treated (ie. hands/feet can be sore). Treatments are repeated every 4-6 months.

Bell’s Palsy Treatment

Bell’s Palsy is a condition involving damage to the seventh cranial (facial) nerve. This nerve controls the movement of the muscles of the face. Although it’s spontaneous cause is unclear, it is thought to be due to swelling of this nerve where it travels through the bones of the skull. Damage to this nerve causes weakness or even paralysis of facial muscles and can be temporary or even permanent.

Neuromodulators have shown remarkable results in balancing facial expression by relaxing muscles that are compensating for the paralysis. Facial spasm, or twitching, can also be treated providing comfort as well as improves aesthetic appearance. After a complete exam and medical clearance from your family doctor, small injections are made into the affected muscle groups during a short clinic visit. Most often, patients resume their day with no limitations other than avoiding high-intensity exercise for 24 hours. Treatments are repeated about every 3 months.

“At Remington Laser Dermatology Centre the customer care is like no other and the staff are extremely knowledgeable. Every staff member I’ve spoken to cares about meeting my needs and takes the time to educate me. When I’m at Remington I feel all my needs are acknowledged and addressed. I also never feel pressured into getting unnecessary treatments. Everything that is recommended to me is custom to my needs and never a waste of money. Anything I have questions about or ask their opinion on, they are honest and will explain how it may or may not benefit me. I strongly believe Remington Laser Dermatology Centre is the best in Calgary and I highly recommend it for all your skincare needs!” – K.C.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about neuromodulators, such as Botox and Dysport, contact Remington Laser Dermatology Centre today. To contact Dr. Kent Remington, call 403-252-7784. To contact Dr. Todd Remington, call 403-255-1633.

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Remington Laser Dermatology Centre
150 - 7220 Fisher Street SE
Calgary, AB T2H 2H8

Dr. Kent Remington ( Mon – Wed )

Tel: 403.252.7784 | Fax: 403 259 5245

Dr. Todd Remington ( Mon – Fri )

Tel: 403.255.1633 | Fax: 403 259 5245

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