Newspaper article from Standard Examiner

Home » Doctor Article » Newspaper article from Standard Examiner

One professional urges potential customers to use discretion

Monday, May 26, 2008

Standard-Examiner correspondent

As a plastic surgeon, Dr. Eric Ashby is alarmed at the rise of medical spas that are not supervised by a plastic surgeon or dermatologist, the only specialists he believes are qualified to oversee the procedures.

“Board-certified plastic surgeons and dermatologists agree that general practitioners do not have adequate training,” he said.

He is also concerned that doctors at medical spas are misrepresenting themselves. A doctor who is “board certified” in any field can represent himself as having board certification without actually having any special training in cosmetic surgery, Ashby said.

In comparison, plastic surgeons and dermatologists have spent years in specialized schooling, said Ashby, who operates a medical spa in the Tanner Clinic in Layton.

Prospective patients should look up doctors at to find out exactly what background, training and certifications they have. Ashby recommends going only to medical spas supervised by a certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist.

Ashby fears that those without extensive training are not prepared to handle complications that may arise.

Ashby also warns that the advertising of “laser-assisted” liposuction, such as Liposmart, leads to a false sense of security.

And although Botox is considered a safe procedure when the brand-name product is administered by a trained professional, injections around the eyes can lead to a droopy eyebrow or eyelid or double vision, he said.

“Botox has been shown safe and effective. It is FDA-approved. Make sure you are going to someone who is properly trained,” Ashby said.

As for laser hair removal, Ashby said the notion that it is permanent is somewhat false. It is a 75 percent to 95 percent reduction, but even after multiple treatments, hair can grow back.

He also cautions people with tan or dark complexions that the laser must be adjusted correctly or it will cause burning.

Ashby urges consumers to use discretion when shopping around for cosmetic procedures.

“After all, it is your body. You only get one for your life. More caution is necessary,” he said.