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Around 68% Of Cosmetic Injections Are Not Administered by Doctors

Researchers from University College London found that 68% of cosmetic practitioners who give injections like Botox are not licensed medical physicians in their investigation of the United Kingdom's cosmetic injectables market.

People often use Botox to treat wrinkles, fine lines, and other medical concerns. Undoubtedly, it will be the most popular non-invasive therapy in 2023.

Despite the popularity, little is known about the educational backgrounds, professional experience, and training of people administering such procedures. To close this knowledge gap, researchers from the University College London (UCL) examined 3,000 websites and found 1,224 independent clinics and 3,667 practitioners that provided cosmetic injections like Botox.

Doctors comprised 32% of the professions, followed by nurses at 13%, dentists at 24%, and dental nurses at 8%. 41% of the 1,163 identified doctors were registered as specialists, while 19% were registered as general practitioners.

The biggest group of the 27 specialties represented on the specialist registration was plastic surgery, followed by dermatology. Although it is uncontrolled, the U.K. injectables industry is expected to grow to £11.7 billion by 2026.

In August 2023, the U.K. government is expected to launch a public consultation on the industry as it prepares to amend its injectable policy. In 2024, recommendations are anticipated to guide changes to the Medical Act.

There are well-documented, yet to date unaddressed challenges in the U.K. cosmetic injectables market. Without knowledge of the professional backgrounds of practitioners, we cannot adequately regulate the industry. Our research highlights that the majority of practitioners are not doctors and include other health care professionals, as well as non-health care professionals such as beauticians.

- Co-author David Zargaran

As a core component of informed consent, he argues, it is crucial for patients to feel secure and confident that the individual providing their treatment is qualified to do so. This research offers a unique perspective on the business to educate patients and regulators and further efforts to create a safer and more open cosmetic injectables market in the U.K.

Until recently, little was known about the frequency of problems and their effects on patients, in addition to the training of those who provide cosmetic injections.

Co-author Professor Julie Davies said the U.K. cosmetic injectables market has recently grown. This has taken chiefly place without monitoring or examination. Our research should warn politicians to enact strict rules and professional standards to protect patients from consequences.

Davies concludes: "Although the risks associated with injections are often mild and temporary, the physical complications can be permanent and debilitating. There are also serious psychological, emotional, and financial consequences for patients when procedures go wrong."

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