Why are Silicone Injections Prohibited from Body Contouring?
What Dr. J. Timothy Katzen, M.D., Body Contouring Surgery Expert, Says
Injecting silicone for cosmetic purposes can be fatal. Silicone injected directly into tissues can migrate beyond the injection site and affect the heart, lungs and even cause death.
- The unsafe silicone injections are being marketed for body contouring by unlicensed providers can cause severe harm and even death.
- Be aware that silicone is not FDA-approved for breast, buttocks, or muscle enhancement.
- It is mandatory to educate healthcare facility staff on quickly identifying and assisting patients who report symptoms of complications from injectable silicone.
- Adverse effects of illegal silicone injection can be experienced as ongoing pain, scarring, tissue death, permanent disfigurement, stroke, embolism, infection, and even death.
- The FDA issued a severe warning against the practice of liquid silicone injection used for body contouring. Illegal silicone injections can cause serious health risks, including body disfigurement and death.
A well-known name in the American plastic surgery fraternity is Dr. J. Timothy Katzen. He practices in Beverly Hills, CA, and Las Vegas, NV. He has global exposure to successfully removing dangerous silicone injections and subsequent reconstructions.
Recently, Dr. Katzen was featured on Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller Hulu (Season 2 Episode 1). "This episode is about the dark side of the silicone injections industry. National Geographic produced this, and I was honored to be a voice for the victims of silicone injections", said Dr. Katzen.
If you have had silicone injection, schedule an appointment with a board-certified plastic surgeon who has ample knowledge and experience in silicone removal and subsequent reconstructions. Silicone injections can be fatal and cause serious harm ranging from tissue death to body disfigurement, stroke, and even death.
What are Silicone Injections?
Silicone, a permanent synthetic substance, is not FDA approved for large volume cosmetic augmentations. Those who administer silicone injections for body contouring are often unlicensed and non-medical practitioners in non-clinical settings such as hotels or residential homes. According to the FDA, injectable silicone is only allowed for a specific use inside the eye (ophthalmic use). There is also a big difference between silicone implants and silicone injection falsely injected for body contouring purposes.
Note: The breast implant shell keeps the silicone from moving throughout the body. However, injected silicone can roam free, resulting in health hazards, including organ failure and death.
The FDA released a safety alert to warn about injectable silicone's health risks and severe injuries. In addition, injectable silicone is falsely marketed as cosmetic dermal fillers that are illegal and not approved by the FDA.
The FDA is aware of cases where unlicensed providers have injected unapproved body fillers like silicone or oil into patients, resulting in dangerous consequences and even death. Thus, healthcare providers must educate their patients on the harmful sides of injectable silicone and strive to ban silicone from body contouring.
Why is Injectable Silicone so Dangerous?
According to Dr. J. Timothy Katzen, the injected silicone contains other foreign bodies and toxic substances. Often, the patient doesn't know what has been injected, and they come to me, saying, I have had stuff injected into my buttocks. Dr. Katzen has seen liquid nail, glue, fiberglass, methyl cyanoacrylate, cod liver oil, and polyurethane injected all over the body. These substances are illegal and unsafe for body contouring, and not FDA-approved. Often, unsuspecting patients are told that a legal, medical-grade product is injected. Unfortunately, later these patients found they were lied to, and illegal silicone, polyurethane, fiberglass, glue, cod liver oil, methyl cyanoacrylate were injected.
Some key points to be aware of the severe complications of silicone injection is jotted down below:
- The FDA issued a severe warning against silicone injections for body contouring.
- Silicone can travel through the body and block blood vessels in the lungs, hearts, or brain. It can cause stroke, lung collapse, heart attack, and even death.
- Be aware that the use of silicone oil outside intraocular ophthalmic use is not FDA-approved.
- We encourage the patients to seek medical attention immediately if they experience complications after silicone injections. The complications can be difficulty breathing, chest pain, signs of a stroke, severe headache, dizziness, or confusion. It may be a life-threatening situation.
What happens when toxic substances, including silicone, are injected?
- Inflammatory response: The inflammatory response happens within minutes of the injection. Therefore, one must be aware that these inflammatory responses can be so severe that the patient may die in the injector's hands.
- The body develops an immune response: If you survive the injection period, the body produces an immune response. Due to the entry of foreign substances into the body, your body creates an inflammatory response. The inflammatory response causes inflammation, redness, and swelling in the injected area. The itching is due to a specific cell in the human body, called a mast cell, which releases histamine. These reactions are due to the usual cascade of the inflammatory response.
- The formation of scar tissue around the injection sites: Scar tissue formation develops around injection areas due to your body's efforts to wall off the injected foreign substances. Your body forms a wrapper of scar tissue and surrounds the silicone ball. Initially, that may sound okay, but over time the body keeps making more and more scar tissue around this little ball of silicone. So year after year, it keeps adding more scars to this silicone ball. Finally, after many years, a giant ball of scar tissue around the silicone develops. Lumps develop underneath the skin on your buttocks and thighs result in kidney stones, kidney failure, arterial blockage, venous blockage, and other fatal complications.
- Pain and numbness: Over time, scar tissue gets bigger and starts to expand, making your buttock bigger. This scar tissue can press on neighboring structures, specifically nerves. Since the sciatic nerve in your lower back is a large sensory nerve that is usually compressed. Thus, physical compression of this nerve can give you back and thigh pain. In addition, the illegal silicone injection causes a lot of localized radiated pain and numbness down the legs.
- The Autoimmune disease: Autoimmune disorders associated with silicone injections are Addison's disease, celiac disease, Graves' disease, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, and rheumatoid arthritis. During the second immune response phase, your body makes antibodies to the silicone. But, unfortunately, antibodies can cross-react with some of your normal tissues. So, it causes an autoimmune reaction. And, these diseases are thought to occur due to the cross-reactivity to the silicone and then reacting against some of your structures.
Overall, silicone injection is prohibited for cosmetic purposes, not FDA-approved, and extremely dangerous for the human body. That is why it is essential to make sure you work with a board-certified plastic surgeon. Be sure to ask many questions about plastic surgery and treatment during your first visit. And, stay aware and stay safe.
Call TODAY to schedule a consultation. For your convenience, Dr. Katzen has offices in Beverly Hills, CA, Las Vegas, NV, and Dubai, UAE. Physical or virtual consultations can be arranged. Virtual consultation options include FaceTime, Zoom, Skype, and WhatsApp. Call TODAY at (310) 859-7770 or email [email protected] to schedule your consultation and achieve your silicone-free body.