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Who Performs Botox Procedures?

A dear friend of mine wanted to have Botox injections to reduce crow's feet and frown lines. She decided to go to a "Botox Party." This is a party where guests self administer Botox to reduce the signs of early aging. I was appalled that this type of party existed. Since Botox is a muscle paralyzer, I thought that it was regulated and only certified medical professionals had authorization to prescribe and administer this drug. Under Colorado law (where I live) a licensed physician could attend a party of this type and administer the injections and it would be totally legal. Alcohol should never be served at these types of parties. Obtaining proper release forms is still necessary.

Botox is one of the largest growing services in the cosmetic surgery industry. Doctors in some states are relying on nurses or physician's assistants to administer Botox and other fillers like Restylane and Juvederm. Most states that allow nurses or physician's assistants to inject these products must be under the supervision and direction of a certified physician. It is important to note that only physicians can legally evaluate the need for and prescribe Botox injections.

Mall and chain store style medical spas are popping up all over the country. The facilities are run by nurses who have a physician sponsor. Many times, the sponsorship is in name only and there is very little oversight insuring the safety of the patients receiving injections.

Each state has its own regulations regarding the administration of such drugs. Since Botox can be used for the treatment of fine lines, migraine headaches, excessive sweating in the underarms, palms and feet, eye twitching, and TMJ only a board certified physician who has proper training of the anatomy should administer Botox treatments.

Allergan is the manufacturer for Botox and provides training for the successful administration of their products. The Botox Cosmetic website has a link to locate a certified dermatologist, plastic surgeon or clinic that can safely perform Botox procedures.

Cosmetologists, estheticians, medical assistants or any unlicensed individual can not perform any kind of invasive procedure like injecting Botox. Basic licensing protocol states that "treatments that are given by injection alter or cause destruction to human tissue and proper use of injection devises require specialized training, only licensed medical professionals can administer Botox." Utilizing non licensed personnel can be punishable by criminal prosecution by both the physician and the unlicensed staff person.

As with any medical procedure it is important to do research and find the most qualified doctor to perform the procedure. While the effects of Botox are temporary, it is still a medical treatment that can have serious side affects.


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