Anti wrinkle injections TGA facts
- The TGA – Therapeutic Goods Administration (the Australian drug regulatory agency) first approved injections for medical use in 1999. In 2002 anti-wrinkle injections were approved for cosmetic use and specifically for the treatment of vertical frown lines. Now anti-wrinkle injections are approved for the cosmetic treatment of vertical frown lines – glabellar lines, horizontal forehead lines, and lines radiating from the corners of the eyes – crow’s feet.
- There are 2 main brands of anti-wrinkle injections approved for the treatment of moderate to severe vertical frown lines between the eyebrows.
What are the cosmetic injections concerns
- Unlicensed, cheap injection products and dermal fillers of unknown origin and certainly unknown quality are readily available worldwide through the Internet
- Injections by providers who never undertook formal training or do not have medical registration
- DIY wrinkle injection kits freely avaialble over the NET
- Selling anti-wrinkle injections on Group buying sites
- Anti-wrinkle injections administered by nursing staff without prior face to face doctor consultation
Illegal Cosmetic injections products
Nothing’s been heard or known about these products until about 2006. Then reports began surfacing of a single patient case after use of an illegal product and then the famous Florida incident, which actually occurred in 2004. Both of these reports were of the same incident.
The effects on the patients involved were exceptionally serious and continued, and in one case, for several years afterwards.
The doctor who injected the toxin had passed it off as real anti-wrinkle cosmetic injection. OCI (office of criminal Investigation) agents traced the fake cosmetic injections used in the Florida clinic to a California laboratory that sold the B-toxin for research purposes. The agents found more of the laboratory’s research product at Toxin Research International Inc. (TRI) in Tucson, Ariz. TRI was selling the unapproved toxin to health care professionals as a cheaper alternative. According to OCI agents, most of the health care professionals misrepresented the fake product to patients, leading them to believe they were receiving the real anti-wrinkle cosmetic injection.
Injections without medical registration
If getting fake unsafe cosmetic injections on line is not enough, there are actually many cases when injector/cosmetic provider is not actually qualified to administer the drug or have no medical background. Some of them think that “watching the drug being administered by doctors for weeks or months” is enough of the training. Some may not even be able to pass the anatomy and physiology of face exam!
The most recent case that comes to mind was reported around April 27, 2012, the Peachtree City Police Department, in coordination with the Douglasville Police Department, arrested Kristie M. Johnson, of Sandbar Cove, Winston, Ga., for six counts of practicing medicine without a license. She was providing injection treatments to reduce the depth of fine lines, wrinkles around the face and lips, hormone therapy, and other medical procedures without any medical license to do so.
DYI Cosmetic Injections
Lets move closer to home now… Cosmetic Physicians Society of Australasia have released shocking photos of a woman who suffered horrible injuries after a DIY facelift went wrong. The woman who got a friend to inject her with the dodgy chemicals bought online asked for these graphic pictures to be released in the hope to educate others.
It is not only illegal to inject anti-wrinkle injections yourself Australia, it is dangerous. Even thou only a trained doctors and a division 1 registered nurses are allowed to administer the drug in Australia, it must still be prescribed by a doctor (not a nurse) after the initial face to face consultation.
Groupons selling cosmetic injections sites
The recent groupon-craze is spreading now to include injectable services. Selliing injectable or surgical procedures on group buying sites maybe illegal and is certainly unethical. Procedures such as injection for for fine lines, folds and lines, lip enhancement and augmentation and dermal fillers require some thought on the consumer’s part and a consultation with a trained doctor. These procedures as well as microdermabrasion, peels and IPL or Laser services should not be made available on “deal of the day” websites.
Group buying websites require people to make snap decisions about purchasing. Once purchased, you normally cant get a refund, and may then be locked into a procedure you do not need or which may not be appropriate for you. The Cosmetic Physicians Society of Australasia has very strong views about this.
Cosmetic Injections by a Nurse
Unfortunately, many try to jump on the band wagon of making a buck when it comes to these procedures. The truth is anti-wrinkles injections and dermal fillers are classified as Cosmetic S4 injection drugs and can only be prescribed by a doctor. The drug may be administered by a doctor or by a division one registered nurse who is supervised by a doctor. It is important for patients as well as salon owners to know, particularly if a salon owner is thinking of getting a nurse to administer these procedures in their salons.
There are strict guidelines for the prescription and administration of S4 medicines. The CPSA was aware that delegation of cosmetic S4 injections to nursing staff is a common practice in many plastic surgery rooms and that these guidelines may not always be followed. The CPSA expressed concern that nurses who administer S4 medicines with no prior prescription may be at risk of losing their registration.
Tips if you are considering anti-wrinkle injection or dermal fillers
- Cosmetic injections are an injectable drug and should be administered by a trained, qualified health care professional.
- Know what you are being injected with. Make sure your health care professional is using only a TGA approved product. If he or she refuses to give you this information, look for another health care professional. Counterfeit drugs do not go through the TGA approval process, therefore they have no enforced safety measures
- Make sure the benefits and risks are fully explained to you in a patient consultation.
- Fully disclose any medical conditions you might have and medications you are taking, including vitamins, herbs, topical preparations and over-the-counter drugs.
- Cosmetic injections should be administered in an appropriate setting using single use/sterile instruments. Private homes are not medical environments and may be unsanitary.
- Some dermal fillers and anti-wrinkles injections require proper dilution. Counterfeit injections kits do not arrive “ready-to-inject,” which leaves the responsibility of preparing the mixture to the consumer lacking experience, skills and knowledge to do so
- Go to someone who knows what they’re doing, if someone hasn’t been trained they won’t do it properly and if you are using dodgy chemicals, they may be the wrong concentration, unsterile and can easily cause infections.
- Ask your friends who had the procedure and make an appointment for a consultation with their doctor first
- Beware of having the feeling of “being pushed” into having a procedure done at the fine of the “obligation-free” consultation
Finally, go with your your gut feeling. If you do not feel right about a particular practitioner, look for an alternative one