Illegal silicone butt injections performed by untrained, unlicensed practitioners have become a dangerous new trend popping up across the country. Alarmed public health officials and prominent physicians within the plastic surgery community are now speaking up about the dangers associated with injectable silicone.
Recent arrests in Washington, Miami and New York City have shown that not only are these body contouring procedures being performed by unlicensed practitioners, but materials commonly found at local home improvement stores such as caulk or tire repair adhesives are being injected into these paying customers.
Dr. Michele Shermak, a Lutherville plastic surgeon and spokesperson for the American Society of Plastic Surgeons has recently launched a new campaign aimed to further educate the public about the dangers of illegal cosmetic surgery performed by unlicensed practitioners.
“It’s horrible on so many levels,” Shermak was recently quoted in the Chicago Tribune. “You’re going to have a toxic reaction.”
Though injectable silicone is only approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of detached retinas, Shermock and other physicians state that have been hearing more and more about illegal silicone buttock injections lately.
Years of medical research has proven silicone to be a dangerous substance for the body, except when encased in buttock of breast implants. Injectable silicone often causes inflammatory reactions in the affected tissue areas, ultimately resulting in pain, redness and an increased risk of wounds and infections. Injected silicone can also travel through blood vessels to invade other organs within the body.
To some women, the risk of illegal body contouring may be worth it – legal buttock lifts and silicone implants are some of the most popular cosmetic procedures on the market. Buttock lifts and implants typically cost upwards of $4,500.
Health officials hope to see a decrease in injuries and hospitalizations due to illegal injectable silicone by increasing awareness and spreading education on the dangers of this growing trend.
Source: Chicago Tribune