A recent study posited that platysma bands are caused by muscular activity during the aging process and are not secondary to skin sagging, and offered a novel approach to managing them.
Patrick Trévidic, MD, and Gisella Criollo-Lamilla, MD, conducted a prospective clinical study of 25 patients who presented with definitive, unilateral, facial palsy following otoneurosurgical treatment, with a focus on the subjects’ anterior neck bands. Patients were followed for up to 10 years.
Of the 25 patients, 76% had visible platysma bands on the healthy side but not the paralyzed side of their faces. Platysma bands were present on both sides in the 12% of those who had a spastic form of facial paralysis. The patients had no ptosis of the neck skin on the paralyzed side.
The investigators concluded that platysma bands are not related to relaxation of the platysma and skin laxity, but rather are caused by activity of the platysma muscle, which the skin then follows. They, therefore, suggest that providers move toward denervating the platysma muscle as opposed to tightening the skin when addressing the aging neck, and note the need for further study of platysma muscle denervation for this indication.
The study appeared in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (January 2017).
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