Hey Doc, Can You Get Me Some Botox?

July 5, 2011

Michael J. Sacopulos, JD

Last week my wife was approached by a woman than does microderm treatments and other facial services.

“Would you serve as my doctor for getting Botox? I can give the injections. I just need you to get the Botox for me. It will be fun!” exclaimed the woman.

My wife, an optometrist, declined and tried to point out the dangers associated with injecting a neurotoxin into someone head. Undaunted, the woman stated, “No problem. Someone will get me the Botox. I have three treatments already scheduled for Friday.”

I fear that this was not a unique situation. The general public perception that Botox injects are no big deal and can be given by anyone that can obtain a bottle is simply wrong. Things don’t always go as planned.

According to WSVN-TV in Miami, last year Diana Cardenas-Gonzalez illegally injected Botox into several women at her West Miami-Dade home.
One of the clients/victims who wishes to remain anonymous revealed the scars to the news crew and said “Oh, my God, I was scared. You know, I said I’m not going to be myself anymore. When I would go out, people would ask me, ‘My gosh, what happen to you?’ little kids, ‘Mom, what happen to your face?'”
The client/victim said she knew Gonzalez was not a doctor but said she trusted her. “She wasn’t a doctor, but she said she was doing this for a while, and we all believed her, and I know people that everything is fine. This wasn’t supposed to happen,” she said.

When the client/victim developed the cyst on her face, she said she went back to Gonzalez who rubbed a massager on her face hoping it would alleviate the problem.

Gonzalez went before a judge last week to face charges of “practicing medicine without a license and practicing health care without a license causing injuries.”

In addition to lacking a license, it seems Gonzalez lacked a visa. At this time she remains behind bars on immigration hold and criminal charges. The Gonzalez case services as a reminder that it is both illegal and unethical to “rent” your professional license to another.