Fillers could be next cosmetic scandal4th January 2012
Experts have issued a warning to patients who use anti-ageing injections.
They are concerned that people could be putting themselves at risk by using injectable fillers in a market that is largely unregulated in Britain.
There are 160 injectable fillers certified for sale in the UK compared to only six licenced in the US where the Food and Drug Administration classes fillers as medicines.
Director of the cosmetic surgery industry body Independent Healthcare Advisory Services, Sally Taber, is worried that fillers could be the next major issue to impact on the sector – following the ongoing breast implants scare – unless action is taken.
The injectable dermal fillers, often sold online, are designed to smooth our wrinkles and fill out cheeks and lips.
No medical training is required to use them and patients often inject themselves, which Miss Taber said this was "totally inappropriate".
She said: “Unless we get this sorted out dermal fillers will be the next disaster.”
The warning comes as 40,000 women across Britain are thought to have implants made by French company Poly Implant Prostheses (PIP), including about 3,000 NHS patients for whom they were used for breast reconstruction after cancer surgery.
Fazel Fatah, president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), said the fillers should be classed as medicines with their use widespread, unregulated and carried out by "everyone from beauty therapists to specialist surgeons".
A survey of BAAPS members found that 25% had seen patients with complications from permanent facial fillers that were so severe that they required surgery to correct.
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