Victims who fall prey to rogue cosmetic practitioners in the UK are being routinely ignored when they register complaints, according to recent reports.
A growing number of people have been seeking out anti-wrinkle treatments and facial fillers during what is being called the “Zoom Boom”, where people want to look their best when taking part in video conferences. Fully 80% of these people find that their complaints fall on deaf ears when they have experienced irreversible damage to their looks and psychological health.
Up to 81% of the treated individuals met with no requirement to provide appropriate consent before their procedures. And 76% were not even informed about what product would be used to treat them.
As many as 93% of the patients were not informed of the possibility of serious complications. They mistakenly believed that the risk of adverse events from the filler treatments were low.
Fillers: A Big Problem
Facial fillers have become the UK’s most popular nonsurgical cosmetic treatment. The industry is worth billions and accounts for 90% of procedures. Fillers involve the injection of materials like hyaluronic acid and collagen to add additional volume to counter the effects of aging or to enhance one’s appearance.
The problem is that facial fillers are a totally unregulated industry in the UK. So a practitioner is not required to have any qualifications whatsoever to purchase and inject the products.
This lack of regulation has directly led to a surge in rogue practitioners who advertise their services on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram. Although facial fillers are normally considered to be a very safe treatment, in the hands of unethical practitioners accidents are common. An estimated 83% of botched filler injections were delivered by those with absolutely no medical training, and sometimes under unsanitary conditions.
Raising The Bar
Some changes are now being proposed. A qualification has been launched to raise industry standards so that public confidence in the anti-aging and cosmetic procedures is enhanced.
Medical authorities are extremely concerned that the lack of support and aftercare when adverse events develop is causing tremendous problems. They are also concerned that unqualified practitioners are exploiting the growing appetite of the public for wrinkle-reducing injections and facial fillers.
Botox, while not technically a facial filler, is a type of wrinkle-reducing injectable that is also causing problems when delivered by rogue practitioners. The product consists of a toxin that, while normally safe in the hands of a skilled practitioner, can cause problems throughout the body.
The Botox product works by temporarily paralyzing muscles that it is injected into. Problems can arise when Botox is injected into areas that it is not approved for.
The ‘Had Our Fill’ campaign is seeking to educate the public about the dangers of facial fillers and injectables like Botox when delivered by unethical practitioners who have no medical training.
- Half of women and 40% of men want plumper pouts and tweaked faces.
- Facial fillers are completely unregulated, and no qualifications are required to administer them.
- Victims have developed necrotic tissue and required lip amputations.
- There is currently no legal age limit for receiving facial fillers.
- Practitioners are injecting dangerous materials like silicone that cause side effects.
One key proposal of the Had Our Fill campaign is that filler injections become illegal for individuals under the age of 18. It is also hoped that social media sites promoting facial fillers undergo some type of restrictions, as well as the need for a government central registration process for filler practitioners with the proper qualifications.
Qualifications would lend some credibility to the facial filler and injectable industry. It will provide them a curriculum and help assure patients that they are receiving treatment from a competent practitioner.
Silicone Injection Removal Experts from the U.S.
A prominent cosmetic surgeon in the United States, Dr. Rafael Antun, is echoing the sentiments of public figures in the UK who are concerned about the dangers of fillers and silicone injections.
Dr. Antun is a silicone injection removal expert who has spent over 15 years in speaking out on the dangers of these products, as well as developing innovative techniques to safely remove them.
It is hoped that the efforts of responsible practitioners like Dr. Antun, and other public figures, will help to turn the tide and inform the public about the significant safety risks of many of these anti-aging and cosmetic products.