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January 11, 2010

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Beware Botox at beauty parlors

THE quality of wrinkle-removing Botox injections offered by beauty parlors could be suspect, a health forum on cosmetic injections heard yesterday, since the state food authorities only approved one domestically made Botox and it had to be purchased and used by medical facilities.

To regulate cosmetic services and prevent illegal practices, the health authorities have recently imposed strict requirements on products.

A hotline - (021) 6468 2629 - to offer consultation on cosmetic injections has also been announced.

"Due to its quick effects and minimal injury, the demand and use of cosmetic injections have grown rapidly in recent years," said Dr Qi Fazhi, director of Zhongshan Hospital's plastic surgery department.

"Half of cosmetic practice in the United States is done by injection. It is a similar situation in my hospital," Qi said. He said the authorities were very cautious in approving products.

The Lanzhou Institute of Biological Products was the only approved Botox producer in the nation.

"The product is only allowed to be used by medical facilities, which must work out a complete database to follow the product's use and storage. Some beauty parlors attract customers with so-called imported Botox and some nanotechnology-based Botox to cheat people," he said.

"Beauty parlors are not allowed to carry out such practices, let alone give customers questionable products. There was malpractice and failure caused by such parlors."

Experts also said cosmetic injections were banned for breast augmentation. Only the transplant of a person's own fat to the breast is allowed after many women suffered serious complications after being injected with polyacrylamide gel, they said.

This could lead to infection and pain and the difficulty of removal.


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