A criminal investigation has been launched after two people contracted HIV from having vampire facials.
New Mexico’s attorney general issued a health warning after two clients of an Albuquerque spa contracted the illness.
State Attorney General Hector Balderas made the announcement on Thursday (June 6), calling for a state and federal review and regulation of the therapy.
Vampire facials came into fashion in 2014, when Kim Kardashian shared a picture of herself after getting the treatment on Instagram in 2013.
As per Allure, the treatment is supposed to rejuvenate the skin, with doctors drawing blood from you before they spin it in a centrifuge to extract platelet-rich plasma (PRP), and then inject or apply it topically.
Basically, it’s supposed to improve skin tone and texture, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and even promote hair growth.
However, depending on where you receive the treatment, the practice could be completely unregulated. As per Business Insider, if you’re thinking of getting the procedure, you need to seek out a board certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon to do the procedure.
The spa in question, the VIP Spa in Albuquerque, New Mexico, has been closed since September 2018 after the health department found the business wasn’t licensed and improperly cared for and disposed of needles.
There’s a ‘high likelihood’ that both cases of HIV are linked to the vampire facials the people received, according to Dr Teirney Murphy, a medical epidemiologist with the health department.
Anyone who came into contact with needles at VIP Spa has been told they need to get tested for HIV, as well as other blood-borne viruses like Hepatitis B and C.
As reported by the MailOnline, the State Attorney General urged people who are considering getting a vampire facial to ensure the facility they’re having it at sterilises its materials.
Balderas said in a statement:
I am highly concerned that these procedures are not being regulated at the State and Federal level and am announcing a criminal investigation into this incident
After the discovery that two VIP Spa clients had contracted the disease, the health department began offering free screening to anyone who had received an injection service from the spa.
View this post on Instagram
I’m now on my second “vampire facial”, aka microneedling with your blood’s own plasma rich platelets 💉with @germantownaesthetics and I can definitely tell a difference in my skin texture and overall appearance with each treatment 👀 I know there’s been a lot of buzz in the news about Vampire facials lately but as long as everything is sterile, there’s no need to worry! • • • • #vampirefacial #prpfacial #microneedling #vampirefacials #prpfacials #acnescars #skincareroutine #skincare #antiaging #antiagingskincare
So far, approximately 130 people have been tested, but no additional reports of infection have been made.
Balderas is now calling on state and federal officials and the US Food and Drug Administration to regulate the practice before anyone else contracts a life-threatening illness.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).