With society’s pressing desire for youthful appearances, new medical spas have been spreading across South Florida, but not all are following Florida protocols. Various medical facilities and spas are starting to offer new beauty and aging treatments, but experts are warning that not all of these facilities are operating under the supervision of a qualified medical professional or a licensed treatment administrator.

Several medical facilities in South Florida are beginning to fuse their practice with “new procedures” and additional treatments. A dentist is offering Botox in Fort Lauderdale, an OB/GYN office is doing laser hair removal treatments in Boca Raton, and a spa gives customers a wrinkle-removing photorejuvenation treatment when they get a haircut.

While these seem like good bonuses and inexpensive extras to the buyers, they come at a price that could potentially leave permanent damage and cause medical harm. One medical spa in Nevada was charged with multiple accounts of malpractice. When patients came into Modern Medical and Weight Loss, the owner would recommend the most expensive form of treatment, regardless of the issues the patient was experiencing. Additionally, patients’ medical records were inaccurate, incomplete, inconsistent and contradictory according to the complaint.

Med spas are not regulated but Florida does require that anyone administering injections or laser treatments meet certain requirements. According to the deputy press secretary for the state Department of Health, procedures must be performed by a physician, a physician’s assistant under supervision, or an advanced registered nurse practitioner working under a protocol signed by a physician.

A 48-year-old woman who went to the Modern Medical and Weight Loss center in Nevada had her testosterone levels skyrocket five times the normal amount due to the owner’s treatment. Many dermatologists note the rising number of problem procedures, especially in South Florida. A bride had to take her wedding pictures with her swollen eye taped open because of bad Botox injections.

Experts and medical professionals are cautioning people to do their research before undergoing cosmetic procedures, especially when they are performed in non-medical settings. Marilyn Johnson, a former Nova Southeastern University vice president, fell for a “new procedure” at a salon and had her face permanently marked from where the woman injected her face with silicone. She notes how this kind of malpractice can happen to anyone and warns that “you’ve got to look for the red flags.”