Cosmetic treatments, like any medical procedures, carry certain risks and potential complications. The risks vary depending on the specific type of treatment. It is important that patients understand these risks and complications before committing to any cosmetic treatments.
Here are some general potential risks associated with cosmetic treatments:
- Allergic reactions: These can happen with various types of treatments, from fillers to chemical peels, and can result in redness, swelling, itching, or even more serious systemic reactions.
- Infection: Any time the skin is broken, there is a risk of infection. This risk is increased if the procedure is not performed in a sterile environment or if aftercare instructions are not followed properly.
- Scarring: Surgical procedures, in particular, carry the risk of scarring. However, even non-surgical treatments like laser treatments can result in scarring if not done correctly.
- Nerve damage: Certain procedures, especially invasive ones, can potentially cause nerve damage, leading to numbness, tingling, or paralysis.
- Unsatisfactory results: Sometimes, the final result may not meet the patient’s expectations, resulting in disappointment or the need for further procedures.
- Complications from anesthesia: If the procedure requires anesthesia, there can be risks associated with that, including allergic reactions or, in rare cases, serious complications such as heart attack, stroke, or death.
- Hematoma or seroma: These are a collection of blood or serous fluid respectively, which may accumulate beneath the skin after surgery.
- Emotional distress: The change in physical appearance can sometimes lead to emotional distress or exacerbate existing mental health issues.
- Long-term health effects: Some treatments might have unknown long-term health effects. For example, there has been ongoing research into the potential links between breast implants and certain types of cancer or autoimmune diseases.
Before deciding to go ahead with any cosmetic treatment, it’s important to understand these risks and implications.
Each specific cosmetic treatment has its own set of potential risks and complications. Below are some of the risks associated with some common treatments:
Dermal Fillers: These are generally considered safe, but possible side effects can include redness, swelling, and bruising at the injection site. More serious complications, although rare, can include infection, allergic reactions, lumps or uneven texture under the skin, and in rare cases, tissue death and blindness if the filler is accidentally injected into a blood vessel.
Anti-Wrinkle Injections (like Botox): Common side effects are bruising and pain at the injection site, and less commonly, flu-like symptoms, headache, and upset stomach. In rare cases, the effects of the toxin may spread to other parts of the body causing muscle weakness, vision problems, difficulty speaking or swallowing, or loss of bladder control.
Laser Treatments: These can include redness, swelling, and discomfort at the treatment site. There’s also a risk of burning, scarring, and pigmentation changes, including both darkening and lightening of the skin. In rare cases, infection can occur.
Skin Peels (Chemical Peels): Common side effects include redness, dryness, stinging or burning, and peeling. More serious risks can include scarring, infection, and changes in skin color. Additionally, certain types of skin peels can cause a flare-up of the herpes virus (which causes cold sores) in those who are already infected.
Always ensure you have a thorough consultation before any treatment to discuss potential side effects or complications. If you have any medical conditions or are taking any medications, it must be disclosed at the consultation, as it could affect your suitability for certain treatments.
Remember, these risks can be minimised by choosing a reputable and experienced practitioner and by following all of the aftercare instructions provided.
It’s also important to follow your practitioner’s after care post-treatment instructions to help manage any side effects. This may include instructions on taking prescribed medications, using cold compresses to reduce swelling, elevating the surgical area when possible, and limiting physical activity.
If you experience severe or worsening pain, excessive swelling, burning sensations, or the bruising doesn’t start to fade after a couple of weeks, these could be signs of a complication and you should contact your healthcare provider immediately.
Your practitioner from Me Clinic or any medical practitioner should be informed as soon as possible of any complications or concerns that develop after treatment.
“The Medical Practitioner’s Board of Victoria requires that advertisements for cosmetic surgical procedures carry the following”: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
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