Reloxin – A Potential Botox Killer

Allergan introduced Botox in 2002 when the FDA approved its use for temporarily improving the appearance of “frown lines” between the brows. Since then, millions of men and women every year have received the injections. Allergan has enjoyed the success of its wrinkle-fighting product, claiming $1.2 billion in revenues for 2007 alone, and the company reports increased sales numbers in 2008. Despite the success of Botox, a new product called Reloxin may soon replace it as the age-defying drug of choice.

Seeing the popularity, demand, and profitability, Medicis Pharmaceutical has decided to enter the anti-wrinkle market with its product Reloxin. The company has licensed Reloxin from its French maker Ipsen. The product has actually been in use in the U.K., New Zealand, and other countries for years now, but Medicis Pharmaceutical sees the U.S. potential for the drug, and has presented it to the FDA for approval.

Reloxin has been rumored to work more quickly and to last longer than Botox. However, the initial studies have failed to definitively show this. In fact, doctors in Europe and South America who have injected both drugs have noticed little to no difference in the lifespan of the two. There are, however, patients and doctors who are completely convinced that Reloxin injections last much longer.

Aside from product effectiveness, some doctors have claimed that Dysport (as Reloxin is known in other countries) is the cheaper option between Botox and Reloxin, which may cause patients to request Reloxin, especially during a difficult economic time like now.

The FDA is expected to make its decision regarding the approval of Reloxin later this year. If Reloxin does turn out to be a product that is more affordable and lasts longer than Botox, Allergan can expect to see sales plummet.

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