TRENTON - Under a bill moving through the Legislature, minors in New Jersey wouldn't be able to get Botox injections unless a doctor says the procedure is medically necessary.
The Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee approved legislation Thursday to clamp down on injections of botulinum toxin for cosmetic purposes in people younger than 18.
The bill cites a study by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery that said teenagers received more than 12,000 Botox injections in 2009, almost twice as many as in 2008.
Botox is used to smooth facial wrinkles by paralyzing muscles, which, if not carefully targeted, can lead to side effects, including problems with breathing, swallowing, and speaking. There have also been reports of death.
Federal and state regulations already restrict the use of Botox on patients younger than 18. The proposed legislation would require doctors to document the noncosmetic medical reason for performing the procedure on a minor. The bill passed, 10-1, in committee. There's no companion bill in the Senate. - AP