Beware of Counterfeit BOTOX
When you go to a plastic surgery clinic, you expect the absolute best, and why wouldn’t you? Plastic surgery and other cosmetic procedures aren’t cheap. At a plastic surgery practice, you expect to be treated by a professional plastic surgeon or a fully trained provider with safe, medical-grade equipment. But one day, what if you saw a jaw-dropping sale on Botox, with prices that could not be beat? Would you automatically assume that the Botox is, as they say, genuine and safe?
The vast majority of the time, yes, it is. The majority of plastic surgery clinics would never knowingly use counterfeit Botox, as this could be tremendously dangerous to the patient, as well as damaging to their reputation and bottom line. Unfortunately, there are some less reputable cosmetic surgery practices that hold themselves to much lower standards. This is (thankfully) rare, but there are a few things you can do to guarantee you will avoid getting counterfeit Botox injections.
Start Your Cosmetic Surgery Journey With an ISAPS Plastic Surgeon
ISAPS plastic surgeons are held to a higher standard. Membership with ISAPS carries with it certain assurances that a plastic surgeon is a professional in his or her field, is board-certified (or the local equivalent), and adheres to the highest standards of safety for best results. Even if counterfeit Botox somehow gets into the mainstream market, a plastic surgery clinic/practice with an ISAPS plastic surgeon should be able to catch the counterfeit before it is used on any patient.
If It Looks Too Good to Be True, It Probably Is
Let the buyer beware. Although many cosmetic surgery clinics often hold sales on Botox (after all, it IS one of the most popular procedures in the world, according to the ISAPS 2016 Global Statistics), there is still a minimum you should expect to pay for it. If you see a full Botox treatment going for far, far below the market price ($50 a treatment, for example), then this should be a signal that something isn’t quite right. You can do some more research into the clinic to make sure that they have a good reputation and/or are board certified, but if a price looks too good to be true, guess what? It probably is.
Check the Box
It isn’t your responsibility to check the box that the Botox comes in to make sure it is genuine, but if you have any suspicions whatsoever, please ask. You have every right. There are a few different signs that you can look out for. There is usually a holographic image printed right on the vial to prove authenticity. If this is missing or is simply a shiny sticker, the product is most likely counterfeit. You should also make sure that the lot number and expiration date on the box corresponds exactly to the lot number and expiration date on the vial inside. If they don’t, then it isn’t genuine. Finally, FDA-approved Botox lists “OnabotulinumtoxinA” as the active ingredient. If it says “Botulinum Toxin Type A” instead, alarm bells should go off.
Pay Attention During and After the Procedure
During the procedure, Botox shouldn’t be excessively painful. There might be some discomfort, but if you are feeling any real pain, you should absolutely say something. This pain could be because counterfeit Botox is being used for your treatment, or the injector has made a mistake. Either way, speak up.
Post-treatment, any swelling and bruising should go down relatively quickly. If you are experiencing persistent bruising or swelling, go back to the clinic immediately for a checkup. If they tell you that everything is fine, and you know for a fact that it isn’t, go to another plastic surgery clinic for another opinion. An ISAPS plastic surgeon should be able to quickly tell if side effects are normal or if something is really wrong.
The good news is that counterfeit Botox, and other injectable fillers, are pretty rare. Every few years, you hear stories about counterfeits ending up in less reputable clinics. As long as you keep your eyes open, make sure that you are suspicious of any “too good to be true” deals, and you do your research into your plastic surgeon beforehand, you should be safe and ready for one of the most effective non-invasive anti-wrinkle, anti-aging treatments available today!