What is a medical spa and is it safe? There are many advertisements for these facilities on television and in newspapers and magazines, but most people don’t know all of the details. As the name would suggest, these are places that provide mostly aesthetic procedures for self-improvement in a quiet, calming environment. They often appear as a normal spa from the reception area or on their websites, but rather than offering the usual massages, manicures, and seaweed wraps, a this facility has a menu that consists of more intense procedures. Common offerings include Botox, microdermabrasion, facial fillers, laser skin resurfacing and hair removal, and chemical peels.You may find more information at Spa.
Normally, a medical spa is owned and run by a licensed and trained doctor, who is often a plastic surgeon that is board-certified. While most doctors perform few of the procedures offered at these facilities, they are available a few days a week to consult with new patients, handle complaints or other issues, check on employees, implement changes, and ensure the effectiveness and safety of the procedures. Laws and regulations can vary greatly by state, so what is approved in Alabama may not fly in Missouri. Some areas have very loose guidelines, and it isn’t unusual to see a dentist or podiatrist overseeing Botox treatments of a deep chemical peel. The industry is still largely unregulated, which means it is up to the clients to exercise caution and do their research.
The safety of medical spa facilities has been the subject of much scrutiny among the medical and cosmetic community. It is not uncommon to have a business where the doctor is unavailable a large portion of the time or is even unaware of employee practices. Since standards are so nebulous, people entertaining a visit should ask about the qualifications and skills of the aestheticians or other employees who will be administering the procedure. It is recommended that patients speak with the doctor for their initial consultation and should be provided with emergency contact information in case complications do arise in the future.
For some, visiting a medical spa isn’t all about using technology to zap away wrinkles. Some are now using other services to attract a wider range of clientele. It is common to see yoga consultations, aromatherapy treatments, and sports massage offered. Again, qualifications and experience should be scrutinized due to a lack of organization within the industry. While there are many facilities that choose their staff carefully, there are plenty of dishonest operators as well that are looking to make a quick buck.
So is a visit to a medical spa safe? It really comes down to what procedure you are looking to get performed, the quality and professionalism of the staff and business, and the availability of the doctor. And while a podiatrist may be capable and legally allowed to administer facial filler, remember that this isn’t their area of expertise and you can find a facility run by a plastic surgeon with more specific experience. Do your research in order to get the best rewards.