Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions2020-06-29T22:24:55+02:00
Are all doctors on the website accredited?2022-01-12T17:00:07+02:00

Yes: We use strict entry criteria with at least 2 years experience, further qualifications, and an audit to ascertain experience. We also offer candidate membership, where practitioners have undergone their training, but do not have enough experience to be listed on our website. They will appear after their 2 years of experience and audit.

Black Friday & Social Media: Should you trust a treatment that’s offered at incredibly low prices?2023-11-27T16:18:53+02:00
  • Aesthetic treatments are costly for a very good reason. The expenses involved in becoming medically qualified, investing in ongoing training, offering quality products, and meeting the necessary safety requirements is significant. In order to meet these costs, quality practitioners have to set their prices accordingly.
  • Be very cautious when prices are too good to be true. The products may be counterfeit, sourced from an unregistered company, or have been over-diluted.
  • Would you feel safe if your gynaecologist offered you a Black Friday special on your Pap Smear? Or if your orthopaedic surgeon gave you a Black Friday hip replacement? It’s neither ethical nor professional for medial doctors to offer specials and discounts!
  • The HPCSA ethical guidelines prohibit doctors in South Africa from advertising special offers and discounts. Doctors are also not allowed to post prices on social media.
Can Scheduled 2,3,5,6 Medicines be advertised on social media?2023-11-27T16:15:57+02:00
NO: HPCSA email warns South African healthcare professionals against the incorrect use of social media. In South Africa, Schedule 2, 3 4, 5 and 6 Medicine cannot be advertised to the general public. NO advertising by Trade Name is allowed. Prescription-only medicine should only be used under the supervision of a licensed healthcare professional – as such they cannot be advertised on social media.
Reference: HPCSA Ethical Guidelines & Medicines and Related Substances Act Item 5.2 For Scheduled Medicines
Safety Measures around Botulinum Toxin2023-11-27T16:09:12+02:00
  • Botulinum toxin is a neurotoxic protein that temporarily relaxes muscles when injected. Injections of botulinum toxin block the nerve signals to the muscle in which it was injected. Without a signal, the muscle can’t contract.
  • The effects of botulinum toxin are always temporary, usually lasting about 3-4 months.
  • The most commonly treated areas are frown lines, forehead creases and crow’s feet wrinkles around the eyes.
  • Several other areas can be treated such as “bunny lines” on the nose, neck bands, jawlines, dimply chins, depressed mouth corners, lip lines and gummy smiles.
  • Neurotoxin is also used in medicine to reduce teeth grinding, tension headaches, to treat temporomandibular joint dysfunction and excessive sweating.
  • There are a lot of trends on social media regarding botulinum toxin like TrapTox, Brotox, Holetox and Scrotox ! Some are medically legitimate specialised treatments. Others are dangerous fads that should be avoided.
  • If in doubt, your AAMSSA registered aesthetic doctor will be aware of the safety, risks and indications for the different uses of botulinum toxin.
  • Did you know: Botulinum Toxin is a scheduled drug and therefore according to the HPCSA rules cannot be advertised using its trade name. That is why ethical doctors refer to it as “wrinkle relaxing injection” or “neurotoxin”.
  • There are three brands of neurotoxin available now in South Africa.
Medical Misinformation in Aesthetic Medicine on Social Media2023-11-27T16:27:08+02:00

Medical misinformation is defined as false or inaccurate information that can affect people’s health. It can be spread intentionally or unintentionally by various sources, such as influencers, bloggers, celebrities, advertisers, or even health care professionals. While the vast majority of medical information posted online by medical professionals is accurate, reliable and in keeping with clinical practice standards, this is overshadowed by the sheer number of posts related to medical information posted by non-medical professionals, which is often inaccurate, misleading and even unsafe.

Some common examples of medical misinformation on social media relating to aesthetic medicine include:

  • Myths and misconceptions regarding the causes and treatments of common aesthetic conditions such as acne, hair loss, wrinkles, or cellulite.
  • Sharing before and after photos that have been digitally altered to exaggerate results or hide the risks of complications of procedures or products.
  • Promoting unsafe or unproven products or procedures that claim to have miraculous results on the skin, body, or hair.

Click to read full article by Dr Shahien Dollie

Safety Measures on the Sizzling Summer Sun2023-12-08T14:53:42+02:00
  • As we march towards the end of the year, the summer sun is heating up and so should your sun protection!
  • Sunscreen protects our skin from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays. These invisible rays are one of the prime causes of premature aging, wrinkles and pigmentation, not to mention skin cancers.
  • UVB rays tend to cause redness and burns to the superficial layers of your skin while UVA rays penetrates deeper into the skin often resulting in pigmentation, wrinkles and damage to the skin’s elasticity. Both types of radiation have been shown to cause skin cancer.
  • The use of a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a minimum SPF rating of 50 is recommended. UVA rays are capable of penetrating clouds, so be sure to apply your sunscreen come rain, sunshine or anything in-between!
  • Very few of us actually apply enough sunscreen.
  • Dermatologists recommend the two-finger dose: if you squeeze two strips of sunscreen out on to both the index and middle fingers that’s the correct amount for your face!
  • One should frequently reapply every two to three hours to maintain complete protection and keep your skin looking youthful and wrinkle free with an even skin tone.
  • DID YOU KNOW? Indoor lights like infrared and high energy visible light also cause damage to our skin. In fact Infrared lights causes more ageing than UVA! So even if you work indoors you should still apply sunscreen to protect you from your screens.
What to Know about Bruxism2023-12-08T14:58:31+02:00
  • This often-overlooked medical condition involves teeth grinding and clenching. It frequently occurs during the night, however the involuntary gnashing may also occur during the day.
  • It’s estimated to affect one in ten adults and long-term grinding can lead to tooth wear, migraines, neck pain, poor quality sleep and even depression!
  • Dental appliances, various oral medications and stress relief may be useful in relieving some of these symptoms, however, in many cases, targeting the muscles directly may be the most appropriate treatment strategy.
  • Botulinum toxin injections can be used for a variety of concerns, and relaxation of the muscles responsible for grinding and clenching certainly is one of them! This is a very effective treatment and can significantly improve one’s quality of life.
  • Be sure to reach out to your AAMSSA registered aesthetic medical doctor or dentist to find out what the most appropriate treatment strategy would be in your specific case.
If I choose to stop getting lip filler my lips will look flat and deflated2023-12-08T15:00:15+02:00

False, if and when you choose to stop with filler, your features will return to their original state.

Needle Or Cannula?2023-12-11T11:15:03+02:00
  • Making the decision between using a blunt flexible micro-cannula or a sharp hypodermic needle is a choice every aesthetic practitioner makes on a patient-by-patient basis.
  • A cannula is a thin flexible tube like a needle, but longer, with a blunt tip. Since a cannula cannot puncture the skin, a needle is used first to make a puncture through which the cannula is inserted.
  • Since a cannula is much longer than a needle it can reach further and treat several areas of the face at once. This means less needle pricks. Sometimes only one or two entry points are needed to treat an entire face.
  • A single-entry point and blunt tip minimise potential trauma or bruising. In addition, there is less chance of inadvertently injecting filler into a blood vessel which can cause serious complication called vascular occlusion.
  • A cannula is blunt and a skilled doctor shouldn’t need to use force as it glides over or under structures like blood vessels or nerves. This allows for a more controlled and measured administration of filler or biostimulator.
  • Needles are sharp and precise. The needle punctures the skin and reaches as many tissue planes of the face as required to get to exactly where one wants the product to be laid.
  • With a needle one can get better projection and lift than with a cannula. The cannula fans the filler in flat layers which is better for contouring.
  • A needle is more precise than a cannula and therefore great for delicate work where control and accuracy are required e.g. smokers lines where a light hand is required to deliver tiny amounts of product quite superficially. In this instance, a cannula simply wouldn’t allow for the same level of control.
  • A skilled injector will use both cannula and needle, because they work in different ways and offer unique benefits. Both tools are advantageous in certain areas of the face and for different applications. One is no better than the other.
More on Biostimulators and Regenerative Treatment2024-01-08T13:58:00+02:00
  • Biostimulators and regenerative treatments are gaining traction in aesthetic medicine, capturing the attention of both providers and patients.
  • Emphasizing gradual rejuvenation for natural, long lasting results, these techniques utilize the patient’s own tissues to address concerns like volume loss.
  • Noteworthy substances such as Poly L Lactic Acid (PLLA), calcium hydroxyapatite (CaHA), polynucleotides, exosomes, and platelet-rich plasma are employed to enhance skin architecture and function.
  • By promoting collagen, elastin, and other crucial elements in the extracellular matrix, these methods contribute to skin rejuvenation and overall improved skin quality.
IV Nutrient Therapy is only Deemed to be Acceptable if the Following Apply2024-01-19T14:10:47+02:00

1. The IV Infusion is administered in a medical setting.
2. The IV treatment is under the supervision, control and responsibility of a licensed medical doctor.
3. The doctor has had appropriate and adequate training in IV Nutrient therapy
4. The treatment is prescribed by a doctor for an individual patient.
5. A full history is taken, and examination of the patient has been performed
6. The doctor is aware of all medications and supplements the patient is taking.
7. All contraindications have been excluded.
8. Minimum appropriate blood tests are taken prior to infusion, with interpretation thereof.
9. Written informed consent is obtained.
10. Incompatibilities and side effects including the risk of anaphylaxis and death, should be
discussed in full detail with the patient.
11. A resuscitation trolley should be available, including oxygen, emergency drugs and AED.
12. Staff should have up to date BLS or ACLS certification.
13. Under medical supervision, IV nutrient therapy may be administered by a Registered Nurse, Nurse Practitioner or Clinical Associate, after the patient has been examined with a prescription given by the supervising doctor.
14. Personalised follow up is required.

The AAMSSA is opposed to IV Therapy that:
• Is led and or administered by a lay person or businessperson as this is illegal and dangerous.
• Is led and or administered by a physiotherapist, allied health care worker or any other occupation, outside scope of practice.
• Allows the patient to select their own IVI cocktail from a “menu”, based on their perceived needs.

Can the society share personal information of members not visible on the website with the public?2022-01-12T15:48:01+02:00

No: AAMSSA is in alignment with the law – we meet the POPIA requirements for the processing of personal information. No personal information of an AAMSSA member will be shared with the public without their written consent.


Can the society make recommendations as to which aesthetic treatment or medicine is best for me personally?2022-01-12T14:35:33+02:00

No:  A consultation with your medical doctor or a medical doctor with a special interest in aesthetic and anti-aging medicine is important, as only after a personal examination and diagnosis can it be determined which aesthetic procedure or treatment is clinically indicated for you.

May a Salon administrate injections without a medical practitioner?2020-04-19T10:01:30+02:00

No, the essence of the regulations / acts is that you need to be a registered medical practitioner registered accordingly with the Health Professions Council of SA to administer scheduled medicines/injections of any nature.

Regulations of the HPCSA:
HEALTH PROFESSIONS ACT 56 OF 1974 states that
(1) No person shall be entitled to practice within the Republic –
(a) any health profession registrable in terms of this Act; or
(b) except in so far as it is authorised by legislation regulating healthcare providers and sections 33, 34 and 39 of this Act, any health profession the practice of which mainly consists of-
(i) the physical or mental examination of persons;
(ii) the diagnosis, treatment or prevention of physical or mental defects, illnesses or deficiencies in man humankind;
(iii) the giving of advice in regard to such defects, illnesses or deficiencies; or unless he or she is registered in terms of this Act.

Any person who is not registered in terms of this Act and practises a health profession in contravention of this section or who pretends to hold such registration is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 12 months or to both a fine and such imprisonment.

It is important to remember that injections of substances have to be done by a doctor or appropriate professional registered with the HPCSA (Health Professions Council of South Africa). These substances used for aesthetic medical procedures are scheduled substances that need to be applied by registered, qualified and trained professionals that understand anatomy, physiology, the specific medicines and its pharmacology. The professional that uses this substance on patients also needs to understand how to manage the possible side effects, reactions and complications. Injections of substances to patients by non-registered persons are illegal and these persons can be criminally prosecuted.

Addendum 3 – The Act that regulates this is Act 101:
Act 101 Section 22A – Control of medicines and Scheduled substances
Subject to this section, no person shall sell, have in his or her possession or manufacture any medicine or Scheduled substance, except in accordance with the prescribed conditions any medicine or scheduled substance may be possessed by a medical practitioner, dentist, veterinarian, practitioner, nurse or other person registered under the Health Professions Act, 1974, or under the Veterinary and Para-Veterinary Professions Act, 1982, for the purposes of administering it in accordance with his or her scope of practice;

In terms of Section 22A (5)(f) of the Act, a practitioner, nurse or a person registered under the Health Professions Act, 1974, other than a medical practitioner or dentist, may prescribe and apply, only within his/her scope of practice and subject to the indication for use of such substances and medicines and to the conditions determined by the Medicines Control Council, to patients under his/her care.

May a Medical Practitioner or Salon advertise Botox?2020-04-19T10:01:22+02:00

No, the essence of the regulations/acts is that you (and your practice) may not advertise a scheduled medicine (such Botox® which is also a registered trade name) to the public.

BOTOX® is a registered trade name and a proprietary pharmaceutical product name owned by Allergan, Inc. and is registered both with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and also on the South African Trade Marks Registry.

BOTOX ®1 identifies the botulinum toxin type Apurified neurotoxin complex product manufactured and sold by Allergan, Inc. Use of the trademark “BOTOX®” distinguishes that product from similar botulinum toxin products manufactured and sold by others. Allergan’s product has received Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) approval under the proprietary name “BOTOX®” for the United states and approval under the same name in South Africa from the Medicines Control Council.

We also need to draw your attention to the fact that BOTOX® is a prescription only, Schedule 4 medicine which results in the advertising and promotion thereof being governed under the Medicines and Related Substances Control Act, Act 101 of 19652. In accordance with this Act, direct to consumer advertising of a scheduled product is not allowed and would be seen as illegal.

To enable medical practitioners to however continue promoting their businesses and services, whilst also complying with the regulatory advertising requirements for medicines, it is recommended that reference in advertisements to individual, Scheduled 4 items be deleted and substituted with phrases such as:
• Wrinkle reducing injections;
• Anti-frown injection / treatment;
• Frown injection / treatment;
• Injection / treatment for frown lines / folds;
• Injection to reduce the depth of frown lines
• Botulinum Toxin Type A

Or other words and phrases with similar meaning, but without referring to specific products or ingredient names.
In terms of the Ethical Rules a Healthcare Professional should refrain from canvassing or touting. As per the Ethical Rules the following is included as the definition for “touting” means conduct which draws attention, either verbally or by means of printed or electronic media, to one’s offers, guarantees or material benefits that do not fall in the categories of professional services or items, but are linked to the rendering of a professional service or designed to entice the public to the professional practice. Failure by a practitioner to comply with any conduct determined in these rules or an annexure to these rules shall constitute an act or omission in respect of which the board concerned may take disciplinary steps in terms of Chapter IV of the Act. Conduct determined in these rules or an annexure to these rules shall not be deemed to constitute a complete list of conduct and the board concerned may therefore inquire into and deal with any complaint of unprofessional conduct which may be brought before such board. At an inquiry referred to in sub rule (2) the board concerned shall be guided by these rules, annexure to these rules, ethical rulings or guidelines and policy statements which the board concerned or council makes from time to time.

Advertising and canvassing or touting
A practitioner shall be allowed to advertise his or her services or permit, sanction or acquiesce to such advertisement: Provided that the advertisement is not unprofessional, untruthful, deceptive or misleading or causes consumers unwarranted anxiety that they may be suffering from any health condition.

A practitioner shall not canvass or tout or allow canvassing or touting to be done for patients on his or her behalf.


Health care practitioners should:
1.  Act quickly to protect patients from risk due to any reason.
2. Report violations and seek redress in circumstances where they have a good or persuasive reason to believe that the rights of patients are being violated.


10.1  REPORTING MISCONDUCT Health care practitioners should:

10.1.1 Report violations and seek redress in circumstances where they have good or persuasive reason to believe that the rights of patients are being violated and / or where the conduct of the practitioner is unethical.
10.1.2 Where it is in the power. Protect people who report misconduct from victimisation or intimidation.

Addendum 1 – Regulations of the HPCSA
HEALTH PROFESSIONS ACT 56 OF 1974 states that
(1) No person shall be entitled to practice within the Republic –
(a) any health profession registrable in terms of this Act; or
(b) except in so far as it is authorised by legislation regulating healthcare providers and sections 33, 34 and 39 of this Act, any health profession the practice of which mainly consists of-
(i) the physical or mental examination of persons;
(ii) the diagnosis, treatment or prevention of physical or mental defects, illnesses or deficiencies in man humankind;
(iii) the giving of advice in regard to such defects, illnesses or deficiencies; or unless he or she is registered in terms of this Act.

Any person who is not registered in terms of this Act and practises a health profession in contravention of this section or who pretends to hold such registration is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 12 months or to both a fine and such imprisonment.

I have a Degree in Nursing obtained at UNISA and also have a Certificate as a Nurse Prescriber obtained in the UK. Will the qualifications be accepted in South Africa and will I be able to administer BOTOX & Dermal Fillers to patients as a nurse?2022-01-12T14:17:51+02:00

No: In South Africa the only qualifications recognised to inject Botulinum Toxin, Fillers, Threads etc. falls under the auspices of the National Governing Body the HPCSA. Therefore only Medical Doctors or Dentists with further training and acting within their Scope of Practice are allowed to offer these injectables. Aesthetic Medicine injectables currently fall outside the Scope of Practice for nurses in South Africa.


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