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Tuesday, Sep. 23, 2014

Concerns raised with lipodissolve procedures

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

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SIKESTON -- Lipodissolve procedures have been performed locally for a little over six months. The treatment is growing in popularity and now being offered in what one local provider calls "inappropriate environments."

Ken Stone, who practices general medicine in Sikeston and performs lipodissolve, said he's concerned people will be injured.

"In many instances, these individuals have little or no training, and someone is going to get hurt," Stone said.

The procedure involves a series of injections, which is used to dissolve fat in a variety of areas on the body. Common targeted areas include the abdomen, back, legs, arms and neck/jaw lines, Stone said. In one area case, a woman was injected with five times the recommended starting dose, he said.

Since injections are made, some areas, especially the neck, carry risks such as respiratory problems. For that reason, emergency equipment such as a defibrillator and cardiac monitor should be on hand if things go awry. Non-

medical settings that offer the service likely don't have those, Stone said.

Another issue people may run into when getting lipodissolve are the credentials of the person performing the procedure. "Any procedure done of this sort under Missouri law should have the direct supervision of a physician -- that is, the physician should either be in the room or closely available for the person doing the treatment," Stone said.

There are no licensing requirements in Missouri to perform lipodissolve. "It's a free-for-all basically, right now," Stone said.

Training is available, though not required. "If you're going to do it, you should at least get some training on it," Stone said.

The training usually lasts a couple of days, and consists of someone teaching the provider-to-be and then observing the trainee perform the procedure. Stone said he isn't concerned about losing business, simply keeping people safe. Some patients who have had the treatments elsewhere have come to him for follow-up treatment.

Although the results will be the same, there can be added swelling and discomfort from procedures performed by those without adequate training, Stone said. There could be injuries, too, if the provider isn't familiar with a body's anatomy and sticks the wrong area.

"These things are not common, but when they do occur, you like to be in a place where somebody can do something about it," he said. "It is safe, as long as you're careful about where you put it in."

A similar trend occurred in Brazil, one of the first countries where lipodissolve gained widespread acceptance. Due to complications, the government outlawed use of the procedure.

Stone is afraid that will happen in Missouri, too. He said: "They could end up taking away from legitimate providers."