Silicone injections, also referred to as dermal fillers, are injections of silicone that are injected into the tissue of an individual in order to change the shape of their body. This practice began in the 1960s.
Since then, it has been banned by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) after numerous reports of dangerous and life-threatening complications. Injectable silicone is not approved by the FDA for any type of aesthetic procedure that includes facial and body contouring or enhancement.
Silicone injections may lead to many issues, including:
- Long-term pain;
- Infections; and
- Other serious injuries, including:
- scarring and permanent disfigurement, typically due to a botched plastic surgery procedure;
- an embolism, or a blocked blood vessel;
- stroke; or
It is important to note that injectable silicone is not an injectable dermal filler. An injectable dermal filler is considered a medical device that is regulated by the FDA.
The majority of dermal fillers that are FDA approved are temporary. They are temporary because they are made from materials that break down and are absorbed by the patient’s body.
Silicone is not a material that breaks down. Certain injectable dermal fillers have been approved by the FDA for use in a patient’s face, for enhancement of:
- Cheeks; and
- The contour of the jawline.
These fillers have also been approved for use on the back of the hand. However, no dermal fillers have been approved by the FDA for large-scale body contouring or body enhancement.
The FDA cautions individuals to never get injectable silicone or an injectable filler as a:
- Breast filler;
- Buttocks filler; or
- Filler for spaces between the muscles.
Injectable silicones are permanent and stay in an individual’s body. They may most throughout the body and cause serious health consequences, including death.
If silicone is injected into an area of the body that has many blood vessels, for example, the buttocks, the silicone may travel through those vessels to the other parts of the body and block the blood vessels in the:
This may cause an individual to have a stroke or even die. A large-scale injectable silicone for body contouring or enhancement may also result in a painful, gravel-like, hard substance that remains beneath the skin permanently.
There are side effects that may occur even years after injecting silicone into the body. There may be numerous costly medical and surgical interventions required to treat an individual’s complications years after their initial injection.
Even after medical intervention, a patient may continue to have serious side effects that require ongoing treatment.
What Are Silicone Injection Injuries?
As noted above, a silicone injection is a cosmetic procedure that is used to enhance the body or to change its shape. These types of injections are often used in areas of an individual’s body, including:
- Facial areas; and
- Other regions.
A silicone injection typically involves some type of silicone oil. This is different from the other types of silicone applications, including breast implants.
Silicone injections are currently only approved by the FDA for one specific use inside the eye, called intraocular ophthalmic use. Due to the fact that silicone injections are not approved by the FDA and are not thoroughly regulated, any time an individual undergoes a silicon injection procedure, it carries with it severe health risks.
These procedures are typically performed in a non-certified condition by an individual who is not licensed or may even be in violation of their medical licensing. Under personal injury laws, if an individual is injured as a result of silicone injections, they may be able to recover monetary damages.
Who Can Be Held Liable for Silicone Injection Injuries?
One of the biggest issues, both legally and in the context of the patient’s health, is that silicone injection procedures are performed under conditions that may constitute medical malpractice. As previously noted, these types of procedures may be performed by unlicensed individuals who claim to practice medicine but, in reality, do not have a medical license.
Or, these procedures may be performed by a licensed surgeon or doctor who is committing malpractice simply by virtue of performing the procedure. In these types of cases, a medical professional may be held liable for any side effects, negative results, or injuries resulting from the procedure.
They may also face malpractice charges and they may risk losing their medical license. A medical professional may even face criminal charges or other penalties.
In other types of cases, a legitimate and legal silicone injection procedure, such as the one approved for use in the eye, may still involve legal issues. One example of this is when the company that manufactured the silicone material that had a manufacturing defect with the silicone.
In these cases, the manufacturer may be held liable under the product defect theory of law if the silicone product caused injuries because of a defect.
What Are the Legal Remedies for a Silicone Injection Injury?
Silicone injection injuries may be very serious and may require legal action to resolve any issues or conflicts. In these cases, the plaintiff, or injured party, may receive a monetary damages award to cover losses, including:
- Hospital or medical costs;
- The costs of additional surgical procedures;
- Pain and suffering;
- Damages for disfigurement; and
- Other related losses.
A surgeon or medical professional may be held liable for violation of their medical licensing terms and duties if they perform a silicone injection procedure that violates the medical standards they are supposed to uphold. It is important to note that plaintiffs may only recover damages for violations of medical standards if they suffered an actual injury as a result of that violation.
In other words, if a patient underwent a procedure but there were no side effects or injuries, they would not be able to recover damages.
What Are Compensatory Damages in a Personal Injury Claim?
A silicone injection lawsuit would be categorized as a personal injury claim. These claims are legal actions where an individual suffered:
- Physical injuries;
- Mental injuries;
- Emotional injuries; or
- Property damage.
Often, these losses result from some type of accident. However, they may also occur in other contexts, including medical procedures.
When a party files a lawsuit, they typically request some type of financial compensation from the party responsible for causing their injuries. This compensation is referred to as compensatory damages, and they are meant to compensate the plaintiff for their injuries and losses.
In order for a plaintiff to be awarded compensatory damages, they must prove that they did, in fact, suffer a loss and that it was caused by the defendant, or the party being sued. In other words, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant’s conduct caused their loss or injury.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with a Silicone Injection Injury Lawsuit?
Silicone injury lawsuits may involve complex personal injury laws. If you have been injured as a result of a silicone injection procedure, it is important to consult with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Your attorney can review your case, advise you of the laws that apply in your state, and inform you of what types of damages may be available. Having a lawyer present your case is likely your best chance at recovery for your injuries, as these types of cases often involve complex medical information that may be difficult for jurors to understand.