Three-dimensional evaluation of the depressor anguli oris and depressor labii inferioris for botulinum toxin injections

You Jin Choi, Young Jun We, Hyung Jin Lee, Kang Woo Lee, Young Chun Gil, Kyung Seok Hu, Tanvaa Tansatit, Hee Jin Kim

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Botulinum toxin type A (BoNT-A) injection administered at an inappropriate site or depth can produce an unwanted change in facial animation because the depressor anguli oris (DAO) and depressor labii inferioris (DLI) muscles are partially overlapped. Therefore, simple BoNT-A injection guidelines, based on 3-dimensional (3D) facial anatomic references and landmarks, would be very useful. Objectives: The aim of this study was to establish novel BoNT-A injection guidelines that include the soft tissue thickness at the lower perioral region. Data were acquired with a 3D scanning system combined with dissections in order to obtain accurate injection sites and depths for the DAO and DLI. Methods: 3D scans of the facial skin, superficial fat, and facial muscle surface were performed in 45 embalmed cadavers. The thicknesses of the skin and subcutaneous layer were calculated automatically from superimposed images at each of 5 reference points (P) in the perioral region. Results: In every case (100%), P3 and P5 were located in the DLI and DAO areas, respectively (45/45). Therefore, we defined P3 as the "DLI point"and P5 as the "DAO point."The soft tissue thicknesses at the DLI and DAO points were 6.4 [1.7] mm and 6.7 [1.8] mm, respectively. Conclusions: The P3 and P5 described in this study are effective guidelines that only target the DLI and DAO. Clinicians, specifically, can easily use facial landmarks, such as the cheilion and pupil, to assign the DLI and DAO points without any measurement or palpation of the modiolus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)NP456-NP461
JournalAesthetic Surgery Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jun 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (MSIP) (NRF-2017R1A2B4003781).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Aesthetic Society.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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