Woman says botched laser hair removal left her with burns - WSMV Channel 4

Woman says botched laser hair removal left her with burns

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A Midstate woman said what should have been a routine procedure has possibly changed her life for the worse.

The woman, who is a bikini model, asked not to be identified. In preparation for a photo shoot next week, she turned to laser hair removal. She said she uses the procedure at least once a year.

But she claimed this time something went wrong.

"If I wore shorts, it'd be like a freak show," the 29-year-old woman said.

The model said the procedure caused burns on her legs and bikini line that have persisted for more than a week.

"It's devastating," she said. "This has changed my life."

The woman said this happened at the Belle Meade Skin and Laser Center, a place she has visited for almost 10 years. She claims an employee who had never treated her before botched her laser hair removal.

"It felt like someone was taking a knife and scraping out the top layer of my skin," she said.

According to the woman, the specialist misused the laser, scorching her skin.

Channel 4 reached out to the business on Wednesday, but managers said they had no comment.

"There needs to be more medical training for these individuals," said attorney Roland Mumford, who is representing the model.

Mumford said in this case, the procedure was done by an aesthetician. In Tennessee, aestheticians receive their licenses through the board of cosmetology, which falls under the Department of Commerce and Insurance, not the Department of Health.

"There needs to be more legislation where this is considered a medical procedure," Mumford said.

"I just want my life back," the woman said.

After what happened, the woman said licensed doctors should be involved during these procedures. She shared some advice for anyone going under the laser.

"Do your research and make sure you're interviewing them as much as they're interviewing you," she said.

But the Department of Commerce and Insurance has no direct oversight over laser hair removal procedures in general, a spokesperson said.

Belle Meade Skin and Laser Center operates as part of Belle Meade Dermatology, which is run by licensed medical doctors. The business was voted one of the best offices in Nashville in 2013.

In 2014, the state legislature passed a bill requiring all medical spas to disclose its supervising physician and whether he or she is board certified.

State law does not address whether a medical doctor must physically be in the room while an employee performs such a procedure.

Mumford said he expects to file a lawsuit within the next few months.

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