Skin Integrity Blog


30 Oct 2013

Lidocaine Allergy - The Sleeping Giant

Dr Stephen Wassall. 

Modern dermal fillers often have lidocaine blended with them. Lidocaine is a local anaesthetic and it is mixed with the filler to reduce the disconmfort of injections. there is no doubt that this is effective and clients universally find injections fillers blended with lidocaine much more comfortable.

However, some people have an allergy to lidocaine. This most commonly will manifest as a skin rash but in some situations anaphylaxis can occur. Anaphylaxis is a severe, life threatening emergency. It often presents with flushing and itching and is quickly followed by feelings of anxiety and increasing shortness of breath. If untreated a patient will quickly lose consciousness and may suffer brain damage or die. The lady in the picture had an allergy to lidocaine injected prior to a biopsy. This is a severe skin reaction and requires medical management.

It is vital that anybody administering dermal filler injections with lidocaine has the ability and the resources to deal with this rare but serious risk. It is possibly somebody will die as the result of an anaphylactic reaction from receiving dermal filler.

Issues you need to consider:

  • Dermal fillers are medical treatments. Medical treatments should be performed in Medical Clinics.
  • Doctors are trained to treat anaphylaxis. Nuses are trained to assist in treating anaphylaxis but are not qualified to treat it unassisted. 
  • Resuscitation treatment should be available. To treat anaphylaxis oxygen, adrenaline, intravenous fluids and a defibrillator need to be available. If they are not available precious minutes will be lost whilst waiting for an ambulance.

28 Mar 2012

Is There a Doctor in the House?

Dr Stephen Wassall. 

Despite its increasing popularity, it is important to realise that Cosmetic Injections such as anti-wrinkle injections and dermal fillers are medical procedures.  In addition, the products used are prescription only and can only be prescribed by a Registered Medical Practioner.  Therefore, it is illegal for these products to be administered by a Nurse or any other person unless the injector is being supervised by a doctor.

Availability for follow up following any Medical procedure including Cosmetic injections is also important.  As with any Medical procedure, Cosmetic Injections can have adverse reactions and side-effects.  It is essential that the treating doctor be available to address any concerns following your treatment, preferably by face to face consultation.  By operating at one location on the Central Coast, Dr Stephen Wassall from Skin Integrity is able to offer the highest level of Medical care and follow up.

Skin Integrity is a properly equipped Medical Clinic.  It has been purpose designed to ensure that all treatments are given in an appropriate Medical environment.  Medical standards and procedures such as patient confidentiality are strictly adhered to.

Be aware that some practitioners working out of Beauty or Hairdressing Salons are describing these as "Clinics".  In Dr Wassall's opinion, this is potentially misleading.

12 Jan 2012

The Ultimate Celebrity Beauty Secret!

Dr Stephen Wassall. 

Skin Integrity has just become aware of the best kept beauty secret ever!  We now know what keeps those Hollywood stars looking amazing.  Watch the video below to reveal the secret.  This video is only recommended for those people with a sense of humour ............


Fotoshop by Adobé from Jesse Rosten on Vimeo.

01 Nov 2011

Why Choose Dr Wassall?

Dr Stephen Wassall. 
Dr Stephen Wassall was born on the New South Wales Central Coast.  He continues to work and live on the Central Coast and is actively involved with the local community.  As he lives locally, he is available to attend to your needs in the unlikely event of a complication or side-effect.  

Some practitioners travel from other destinations to perform treatments on the Central Coast.  They will usually offer services at Beauty Salons or even hairdressers.  Some medical cosmetic treatments consist of the administration of a relatively fragile purified protein.  The integrity of this protein can suffer if it is not stored at a certain temperature or it is subject to movement.  Always ensure that your practitioner is using fresh, non-reconstituted product for each site they are performing procedures, particularly if they have travelled long distances.

Dr Wassall has been performing Medical Cosmetic Procedures on the Central Coast for 10 years.  He is highly experienced and has performed thousands of procedures.  Despite this, he offers a very competitive pricing structure.  Clients that purchase larger volumes of product can save more.  There are practitioners that are considerably less experienced charging considerably more for the same products.  Dr Wassall offers no obligation consultations and price quotations.

Dr Wassall is committed to ethics, integrity and professionalism.  He will not compromise his medical standards for profit.  He often declines to perform procedures he does not believe are in the best interests of his clients. For further information on Dr Wassall's education and training click here.

23 Aug 2009

What is a Cosmetic Physician?

Dr Stephen Wassall. 
Cosmetic Physician is a title commonly used to describe a Medical Practitioner that provides one or more non-surgical medical procedures designed to augment or enhance their patient's appearance.  Procedures performed include anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers, chemical peels, laser and IPL therapy, cosmetic mole removal, acne treatments, leg and facial vein treatments, microdermabrasion and photodynamic therapy.

It is important to realise that the the title Cosmetic Physician is not a recognised specialist qualification.  No exam or post-graduate study is required to use this tiltle.  In fact, any registered Medical Practitioner could refer to himself as a Cosmetic Physician.  This is potentially somewhat confusing as the tiltle Physician generally refers to a recognised specialist with post-graduate training and qualifications.  It is for this reason that I personally use the term Cosmetic Medicine Doctor.

In Australia there is no government recognised post-graduate Cosmetic Medicine or Cosmetic Surgery qualification.  There is no officially recognised training or accreditation in any of the procedures.  Training generally is provided by drug companies that produce the products that Cosmetic Doctors use.  This is not to say that training is inadequate.  In fact, my experience has been that the training and ongoing education provided by these companies is excellent. 

There are two groups in Australia that represent doctors paractising non-surgical cosmetic procedures.  These are the Australasian Society of Cosmetic Medicine and the Cosmetic Physicians Society of Australasia.  No exam needs to be passed to become a Member of either of these Societies (check the websites for further details on Membership).  Both these Societies provide educational events and seminars as well as offering more advanced education such as Diplomas and Fellowships.  Whilst I am a supporter of ongoing education it is important to realise that none of these qualifications are recognised by the government as conferring specialist status. 
23 Aug 2009

What is the Best Dermal Filler?

Dr Stephen Wassall. 
I am often asked which dermal filler is the best.  The short answer to this is that there isn't one - it is like asking if Coca Cola is better than Pepsi.

In my practice I only use temporary hyaluronic acid fillers.  These are by far the most popular type of filler with a proven record of safety and efficacy.  There are three brands of  hyaluronic acid fillers that I use and each of these brands has several products within the range. 

Why do I use so many different products - simply because one product does not fulfil all my requirements.  Products come in different sized syringes, some are thicker than others, some are mixed with local anaesthetic etc.  Some of the products will stay pretty much where they are injected, whilst others tend to merge into the surrounding tissues.  As a result, I prefer certain products in some areas of the face and others in different areas.  Some products can be injected close to the surface for superficial wrinkles whilst others are better for deeper folds.

Therefore, I may utilise different products on the same patient.  As a patient ages the most suitable filler for them may change (afterall, nobody says you need to drink Coca-Cola all your life!).  It is important to match the needs of the patient with the characteristics of the product being used to maximise the patient outcomes and minimise potential problems.

Therefore, my advice is to find a doctor that you feel comfortable communicating with and discuss your requirements with him or her.  They should be able to explain which dermal filler they feel is best for you and why.
17 Apr 2008

Cosmetic Medicine Update

Dr Stephen Wassall. 

Dr Wassall was recently fortunate enough to attend the annual Cosmetic Medicine Conference on the Gold Coast. This four day conference was attended by a variety of local and international doctors who specialise or have an interest in Cosmetic Surgery of non-invasive Cosmetic Medicine.

One consistent message from the conference was that more and more clients are leaning towards non-invasive methods for facial rejuvenation as opposed to the more traditional surgical procedures such as facelifts or laser resurfacing. In today's busy society, people are unable to afford the down time associated with more aggressive invasive treatments.

Procedures such as anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers and lighter chemical peels are becoming increasingly popular. Lasers are now being designed to offer treatments with less down time. An example of this is the Fraxel Laser which works by shooting thousands of tiny little channels into the skin in order to stimulate collagen production.

Interestingly, new injection techniques are being used with dermal fillers, particularly around the eyes and midface. This is being utilised mainly to reduce "tear troughs" and volume losses that occur around the eyes and cheeks as we age. Dr Wassall has now received extra training in these techniques and is offering them to his clients.

Restricted Content

Due to restrictions imposed by the TGA (Therapeutics Goods Administration), it is illegal to advertise prescription medications directly to the public. Therefore, the actual names of the medications or substances are not available in public areas of this website.

  • SAFETY: A genuine medical clinic offering safety, discretion, hygiene, sterility and the ability to deal with emergencies. These standards are not available in Beauty Salons with visiting practitioners.
  • VALUE: The best prices for injectable cosmetic treatments performed by a doctor on the Central Coast.
  • EXPERIENCE: Dr Wassall has been practising Cosmetic Medicine since 2002 and has performed over 10 000 procedures.
  • REWARDS: Cosmetic clients of Skin Integrity will also have the option of receiving access to Special Offers and Promotions. These include discounts on anti-wrinkle injections and dermal fillers.