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J Drugs Dermatol. 2012 Jun;11(6):731-6.

Relative potency of incobotulinumtoxinA vs onabotulinumtoxinA a meta-analysis of key evidence.

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Banbury Face Clinic, The Jandhyala Institute, Banbury, UK.


Botulinum neurotoxin-A (BoNT-A) has become widely used in aesthetic applications over the past 20 years with several formulations now available. Although widely assumed to be equipotent, recent claims that the original commercial formulation, onabotulinumtoxinA (Botox®/Vistabel®, Allergan UK, Marlow, UK) is more potent than incobotulinumtoxinA (Bocouture®/Xeomin®, Merz Pharma, UK) have raised concerns that clinicians may be persuaded to increase doses to the potential detriment of their patients. To investigate this further, a review of the clinical evidence for the commercially available cosmetic formulations of BoNT-A was undertaken alongside a meta-analysis, carried out using mixed treatment analysis (MTA) methodology, of the available clinical data in the aesthetic setting. This demonstrated that at a dose of 24 units, there was a 94% likelihood that incobotulinumtoxinA was more effective than onabotulinumtoxinA in achieving a response as defined in the included studies; however, the scale of this advantage was not clinically meaningful. Of 11 clinical and preclinical studies identified comparing incobotulinumtoxinA and onabotulinumtoxinA directly, the weight of evidence suggested that there was no difference in the relative potency of the two products. As such, clinicians should continue to consider the formulations to be equipotent until such time that compelling clinical evidence to the contrary becomes available.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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