Wednesday, November 19, 2008

FDA looks at risks of cosmetic face fillers

Plastic surgeons pledged today to help the government track the safety of one of the most popular new beauty treatments: facial injections of various kinds of gels to smooth away wrinkles. At a hearing today, the Food and Drug Administration asked independent advisers for recommendations on how to monitor the long-term safety of face fillers and for guidance on improving testing and warning patients about potential risks.

Different from Botox, which is derived from a toxin that acts on facial muscles, wrinkle fillers are like the biological equivalent of a bit of spackle. Except they're injected into the face. FDA officials are concerned that fillers are being used for purposes they were never tested and approved for, such as plumping the lips, which are extremely sensitive. More black, Latino and Asian patients are trying plastic surgery, and some information suggests they may be susceptible to unsightly blotches and other complications from fillers.
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