The wave of Botox scams continue to appear across medical spas and cosmetic surgery centers around the country.
Administering counterfeit Botox is a federal offense, and many salon owners have lost their license and are looking at jail time and fees when they choose to use artificial products on their clients. Recently, Xin He, owner of a Bellevue beauty salon, was found guilty for injecting clients with counterfeit Botox and Restylane.
Prosecutors found evidence that the salon owner had falsely claimed that she was licensed to administer injectable treatments, and had been advertising the salon in the local Vietnamese-language newspaper. According to the story in the Komon News, two women suffered severe side effects from the unlicensed treatments they received at the salon, and one left with permanent scars and large lumps under the skin.
After further investigation, prosecutors found that the salon owner had also been administering other treatments that caused severe side effects. He had also been administering counterfeit Restyalne injections, another anti-aging dermal filler designed to correct fine lines and wrinkles. Investigators found evidence of counterfeit Botox on the property and the salon owner was eventually caught by an undercover agent. Investigators also searched the salon for evidence of any other drugs, and found several vials of drugs that have not been FDA-approved.
The sentencing is scheduled for December 18, 2009 and the salon owner will be facing about three years in prison and will need to pay a $10,000 fine.
In order to avoid Botox scams and counterfeit products, the American Society of Plastic Surgery urges consumers to verify the track record of salon owners and medical professionals who may be administering a treatment, and to look for evidence that the salon or center is licensed to perform certain procedures.
The average price of Botox is about $300 to $400+ per injection depending on the location, so any extreme discounts on Botox should raise a red flag.