Breakthroughs in Plastic Surgery

Cosmetic Injectables Pose Risks to Patients

Cosmetic Injectables Pose Risks to Patients

Cosmetic injectables, at least those unapproved by the FDA, can pose dangers to patients. One risk is blindness, says a member of the Physicians Coalition for Injectable Safety.

injection 8-22A group called the Physicians Coalition for Injectable Safety wants consumers to know that two methods of cosmetic injection – mesotherapy and carboxytherapy – can be hazardous and should be considered with caution.

These two methods aren’t widely known, and as cosmetic procedures, they haven’t yet met the approval of the Food and Drug Administration.

Mesotherapy, which is another term for injection lipolysis, involves mixing vitamins, drugs and enzymes into a compound that is later injected into the body as a way of dissolving fat cells or rejuvenating aging skin.

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The practice itself isn’t new; it has been used since 1952 and is available in many countries. But Dr. Mark Jewell, leader of the physicians coalition, recently said that mesotherapy as a cosmetic method is something that has yet to be tested and studied enough to meet respectable American medical standards of safety. Patients who are considering it, he said, should be advised that the injections include products that may be unsafe.

Carboxytherapy, the other method in doubt, involves the injection of carbon dioxide gas under the skin as a way of contouring the face and body. Its proponents claim that the injection of gas will increase and improve the body’s blood circulation, which in turn can reverse cellulite and some signs of aging.

But coalition member Robert Weiss said that contrary to what its proponents may advertise, the method has not been clinically tested or approved by the FDA as a cosmetic procedure. And among other risks, he said, having these injections made around the eye area can lead to blindness if gas bubbles enter blood vessels.

The coalition wants to keep consumers aware of the practical and legal status of cosmetic injectables, plus any updates related to these treatments. More information is available at www.injectablesafety.org.

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