A MUM-OF-ONE feared she'd go blind after fillers caused her lip to swell so much it burst and oozed gruesome yellow pus.
Jessica Myott, 25, from Stockport, was rushed to hospital for an emergency op and put on a drip as she was in so much pain she was unable to eat or drink for more than a week.
The beautician feared the worse when the infection spread to her eye after she had 1ml of filler injected into her lips at Faces By AKJ Aesthetics — which she’d seen advertised on Instagram.
Jessica, who lost a stone in weight during the ordeal, was awarded £2,500 in compensation over the ordeal.
“I looked like the elephant man," she said. "I was petrified.
“I had to spend four days in hospital on a drip and have an operation to remove three abscesses.
“I’m left suffering with panic attacks and my top lip is permanently numb.”
Jessica, who has just opened her own salon Hidden Beauty in Manchester, had been having fillers for five years before booking with Faces.
But when she arrived at the salon in Hazel Grove, Stockport, on November 29, 2018, she said she was greeted by a woman who wasn’t the one in the ads, but she “didn’t think anything of it”.
She paid for a £450 package to have 3ml of filler injected to her lips and jaw.
She didn’t notice anything unusual until the following day, when her top lip started to swell, but Jessica thought this was normal.
But by the Sunday, it was so big, she was in agony.
She said: “I woke up in horrendous pain. I sent photos of my lip to Faces and asked for help, but they said as it was a Sunday, they couldn’t see me.
“I went to two walk-in clinics but they couldn’t help. That night I went to Stockport A&E. They confirmed I had an infection, and sent me away with antibiotics.
I took the medication but I woke in the night unable to breathe properly. I knew the infection was spreading
“I took the medication but I woke in the night unable to breathe properly. I knew the infection was spreading so I went back to A&E.
“They sent me home at 7am on Monday with steroid tablets — the nurse there even admitted they didn’t really know how to treat me.”
Jessica also went to her GP that day, and was advised to go to Wythenshawe Hospital as it has facial surgery specialists.
But after visiting the A&E, she was sent home again and told to let the antibiotics work for another day.
“It was a nightmare. The pain was horrendous. I had missed my first day of a new job, and was unable to eat or drink and I couldn’t see my little girl who’s only four,” Jessica said.
“I went to my mum’s and was in tears because no one was listening to me. I felt like I had water in my ear. Under my eye was starting to burn. I was scared I would go blind.”
Jessica’s lip was growing bigger all the time. She said she sent daily images to Faces, and they apologised and offered her half her money back, but she said she refused it.
Mandy Johnson, co-owner of Faces, said the salon was in constant contact with Jessica during the ordeal — and claims they gave her a full refund.
She said they have doctors and nurses that work on site, but as it was a Sunday, they were unable to give her a prescription as the pharmacy was closed.
“We offered to pay the full cost for her to go to a private doctor the day it happened, but she chose not to,” she added.
The following Tuesday night, Jessica’s lip was huge, so her mother “stormed” them into Wythenshawe A&E and demanded something be done.
“While we were there, my top lip split. I was put on an IV drip for antibiotics and fluids and was told I would have to have an operation,” Jessica explains.
Had Our Fill campaign
THE wrinkle-busting and skin plumping treatments account for nine in ten cosmetic procedures.
Fillers are totally unregulated and incredibly you don’t need to have ANY qualifications to buy and inject them.
Shockingly, 83 per cent of fillers are performed by people with no medical training.
Women have been left with rotting tissue, needing lip amputations, lumps and even blinded by botched jobs.
Despite the dangers, there is no legal age limit for dermal filler, which is why Fabulous has launched Had Our Fill, a campaign in which we call for:
- Fillers to be made illegal for under 18s
- A crackdown on social media sites plugging fillers
- A Government-backed central register for practitioners with accredited qualifications
We’re working in conjunction with Save Face and are backed by the Royal Society for Public Health, British Association of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons and British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS).
We want anyone considering a non-surgical cosmetic treatment to be well-informed to make a safe decision.
“I had to clean my lip during the night because pus was pouring out.
“They operated on Wednesday and removed three abscesses.
“When I came round, I had a panic attack. I had to stay in the hospital for another two days with my lip left open in case another abscess developed.”
Jessica was finally allowed to go home on December 8, 2018.
“I didn’t care about how I looked, I just wanted to see my little girl — it was the longest I’d been without seeing her,” she said.
“When my lip started to settle and heal, I realised it was much smaller — no lip, just skin.”
'I still have fillers'
In July 2019, at a medical appointment, Jessica was told she could have fillers again, and she found Dr Jane Leonard — an aesthetic doctor who works out of Beyond Medispa in London.
“I was so scared I was crying at my first appointment, but Jane was really good,” Jessica said.
“I wasn’t afraid of anything before this and now I’m even scared of needles. I have panic attacks if I need to have bloods taken.
“I still have fillers but not as much as I used to.”
Dr Jane said: “Before having fillers, look for someone who is medically trained — they can write a prescription if a problem arises.”
I wasn’t afraid of anything before this and now I’m even scared of needles. I have panic attacks if I need to have bloods taken
Jessica also sought legal advice from Pabla & Pabla Solicitors in Manchester and was awarded £2,500 in compensation from Steph Billance — the self-employed cosmetic injector who carried out her treatment.
Ms Billance, 27, Manchester, told Fabulous she was “devastated” by what had happened.
“It’s the first reaction someone has had in my entire four-year career — and I’ve treated thousands of women in exactly the same way.
“We tried to help her as much as we could on the Sunday and offered to pay for her to see a private doctor, but she turned it down.
“If she had got it treated when we had advised, she wouldn’t have ended up in hospital.
“If the right aftercare advice isn’t followed, a reaction could happen even if it was the most senior injector doing it.
“There are many reasons why she could have had the infection, but I didn’t treat her any differently to any other client — so I’m confident I followed the correct procedure.”
Jessica added: “I would only get fillers now from a qualified doctor — no one below that as they don’t learn about the complications.”
In a victory for the Sun's Had Our Fill campaign, kids under 18 face being banned from having cosmetic fillers.
Under a proposed new law, it will be illegal for children to have lip fillers unless they can prove their age.
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