The Dangers of Walk-In MediSpas by Win Pound, M.D. in Atlanta, GA
There was an excellent segment this afternoon (9/26/14) on the Dr. Oz Show regarding the dangers of walk-in MediSpas. The guests where the two plastic surgeons who host the show Botched. They pointed out that many of the procedures done in these MediSpas are done by technologists or medical personnel who have inadequate training and are not capable of handling the potential complications related to the procedures they perform. They further pointed out that often, there is not a physician on site while these procedures are being performed. When there is an actual physician available, he/she may not be a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon. MediSpas are not regulated like surgery centers and, therefore, may fly under the radar of government regulating agencies that may be overwhelmed and underfunded. When the show questioned the regulatory agency of one state, the response they got was that potential patients should do their homework and take responsibility themselves. In other words, instead of taking responsibility for regulating procedures in such clinics, they simply threw it back to the clients to protect themselves. In the segment, Dr. Oz showed complications, some very drastic, from the three procedures he cautioned to avoid from a walk-in MediSpa – Botox injections, filler injections, and lasers. Some of the photos shown were pretty dramatic. They pointed out several questions that potential clients of MediSpas should consider and ask the staff:
1. Is there a physician available that the patient can speak with? Just because the staff is wearing a white lab coat does not mean that they are doctors or medical personnel who are qualified to treat clients with a medical procedure. Also, is the doctor who is available board-certified in dermatology or plastic surgery?
2. What is the training and experience of the person performing the procedure if they are not the doctor? How many such procedures have they performed?
3. What are the potential complications of the intended procedure?
4. In the event of a complication, how would the staff of the MediSpa handle it?
At the end of the day, patient safety is paramount. Patients seeking invasive treatments in a poorly regulated MediSpa are on their own with regards to their safety. It is therefore extremely important that they do their research before allowing MediSpa staff to perform their procedure. It is never a good idea to sacrifice quality of care for cheaper fees when it comes to your health.
To learn more here is the latest episode from Dr Oz about this subject