Who Can Inject vs. Who Should
Did you know that virtually any physician can purchase and administer injectables? From gynecologists to pediatricians, to internists, virtually anyone with medical training can wield a syringe. A number of doctors are practicing outside of their specialty, without proper training, which can put you at risk of anything from mediocre results to deformity. Unbeknownst to many, nearly any doctor can take a weekend crash course in injectables and perform the procedure without actually receiving the necessary hands-on training or getting the proper understanding of what’s needed to reduce any risks and ensure the best results. That’s why it’s important to choose an ExpertInjector who is properly qualified to perform injectable procedures and only administer products that are FDA-approved for aesthetic use.
What makes someone an ExpertInjector?
Be on the lookout for these precarious signs—and then be on your way.
- The injector offers deep discounts or brags of getting a great deal from outside the country on the product that you are getting.
- The injector offers to perform the procedure at your home, his or her home, at a party or anywhere outside of a medical office setting.
- The injector is unwilling to show you the packaging from which your injectable product came, as well as the bottle that contains the actual injectable substance.
- You are not given any informed consent papers to read and sign.
- You are not properly educated about complications or adverse reactions prior to treatment.
- You are not given post-treatment instructions.
- You are not given a variety of injectables options to choose from.
- The injector does not inquire about your previous injectable treatments and current medications or allergies.
- The staff is unprofessional or its unqualified members perform procedures.
- The injector cannot answer your questions about the product he or she is using.
- The injector is reluctant or unable to produce other patients’ before-and-after images.
- The injector is not board certified in plastic surgery, facial plastic surgery, dermatology, or oculoplastic surgery.
ExpertInjectors administer and buy only the injectables that have been FDA-approved.
What does this mean?
- FDA approval: Drugs, which is what injectables are considered, must be evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration for proven safety and effectiveness before being marketed. The only time it’s OK for an injector to use an injectable that isn’t FDA-approved is if they are legitimately involved in a clinical trial.
- Clinical trials: In order for an injectable to be approved by the FDA, it must undergo clinical trials. These are the experimental medical studies of a drug or device to collect data about its safety and efficacy. If you are given the opportunity to participate in a clinical trial, tread cautiously and ask for as much information as possible. If the trial is an approved FDA clinical trial, the doctor must inform you of this if you choose to take part. You should never feel pressured or compelled to participate in a trial, and you should not participate without a full understanding of the potential risks to your health and safety.
- Off-label: This term indicates the use of a medication similar to but not exactly the same as the FDA-approved use. You should be concerned when a treatment is recommended to you and the application is much different from the FDA-approved application. (For example, injectable silicone is FDA-approved only to treat corneal defects. Using the same injectable substance to enhance facial features or fill facial folds is not off-label—it's way, way off.) However, many injectables are safely used off-label because of their proven track record, but this kind of use should only be administered by an ExpertInjector.
What Could Go Wrong
When you put yourself in untrained hands, you increase your chances of mediocre or even devastating results. An ExpertInjector is familiar with the intricacies of not only each injectable, but of facial anatomy as well, giving them unparalleled understanding of why certain injectables should and shouldn’t be used in certain areas. All injectables are technique-dependent. To get the best results, you need to go to a physician who has extensive experience using the injectable recommended to you. It’s imperative that your physician knows the nuances, shortcomings and strengths of the product, where to inject it and how to manage potential complications.
The most unfortunate kinds of stories that make headlines are those involving the use of injectable silicone, which is not FDA-approved for cosmetic purposes. Whether patients knowingly opt for it out of ignorance or a devious injector claims it’s something else, silicone can cause deformations such as lumps, nodules and scar tissue that can alter one’s appearance in an unwanted way and even make it difficult to move parts of the face. A permanent filler such as liquid silicone can produce permanent complications that can occur years after the injection.
It’s not just the disregard for FDA status that makes some injectors dangerous. Some will use an otherwise safe injectable and use it in a way or area that is not condoned. This can result in equally devastating side effects.