Fears fish foot spa pedicures could spread HIV and hepatitis C

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foot fish spa pedicure could spread diseases such as HIV and hepatitis C, health experts have warned.

Agency for Health Protection of the Government said that people with diabetes, psoriasis or weakened immune systems are especially vulnerable and should not participate in the madness beauty at all.

The new guidance published today, said the risk of infection for users increasingly popular treatment in which small tens fish nibble dead skin from customers ‘feet, is’ low but could not be completely excluded “

Health warning: There are fears fish pedicures could spread HIV and hepatitis C, the Health Protection Agency have warned

health warning. there is a fear fish pedicures could spread HIV and hepatitis C, Agency for Health Protection has warned

the agency says water fish tank contains microorganisms and create problems could arise from bacteria by claw fish rufa pedicures are transmitted, of the same or of another if water spa water is not changed client.

If a user is infected with a blood-borne viruses such as HIV or hepatitis and bleeds into the water, there the risk of diseases could be transmitted.

According to the agency guidance, the risk is “extremely low” but “can not be excluded completely.”

An agency spokesman said: “We have issued this guidance because there is a growing number of these spas

” When the procedures for good hygiene are followed, the risk of infection is very low. .

“However, there is still a risk of transmission of a number of infections -. this does include viruses like HIV and hepatitis”

the HPA has recommended that the water is changed the spa after each client.

The equipment can not be sterilized conventionally because the process could harm fish, of which there are about 200 in each tank.

The pedicures – which have long been popular in Asia, where fashion began – have been banned in some US states, including Florida, Texas, New Hampshire and Washington, due to fears that infections could spread through open wounds


the trend, which is intended to leave customers with the soft and sexy feet, has spread to beauty salons across the country and now there about 280 fish spas in the UK.

Amy Childs and James Argent only way is Essex have had the treatment.

A spokeswoman for the charity of HIV Terrence Higgins Trust, said. “The risk of infection is minimal, but people should be careful where you choose to go ‘


Trendy: BBC presenter Emily Maitlis has a fish pedicure

Ticklish: BBC presenter Emily Maitlis has a fish pedicure

earlier this BBC presenter Emily Maitlis last year proved the beauty treatment. Here it is what I thought of him.

The first step of Aqua Sheko, is a Saturday night at 8 pm, and is filled with positively – with people. Obviously it is always full of fish.

Kensington premises are queuing up to pay £ 45 to put your feet in a large tank of hot water and have their dead skin nibbled by brother baby piranha fish Garra rufa.

Does that sound gross? You gamble. £ 45 does sound like a lot of money to be eaten alive? You gamble. I’m dying to have a go? Of course yes.

In this case, there are rules prohibiting broken skin, cuts and bites and I feel relieved just to pass the test. I’m smiling and relaxed as I pad to the sidewalk behind the fish tank.

I’m talking as I slip out of spa slippers and sink your feet into the tank. But nothing prepares me for what comes next. Dozens of small mouths – like suckers – head to his feet. He looks down and sees a swarm covering everything below the ankles, while the really cheeky dive between fingers, under fingernails and flashing his instep. I feel like being vacuumed.

has been described as a tingling sensation and a light massage but make no mistake – they are the bait. It is a strange feeling so that I start to laugh.

My hands go to her mouth to hide my embarrassment, but my shoulders still trembling with nervous laughter.

it takes me about ten minutes before I’m able to look down at my feet without wanting to churn out. After 20 minutes in the water, the novelty (and indeed the skin) has begun to disappear.

After my skin feels softer vaguely but not very different. And if they were taken from my toes pieces, so, munchers have covered their tracks pretty well.

But if you ask me if it was therapeutic, I would have to say yes. I have not laughed like this in a long time.

But a woman who runs a chain of foot spa centers health chiefs said they were “scaremongering”.

Dr. Hilary Kirkbride, consultant epidemiologist at the HPA, said: “Provided that hygiene standards are followed by salons, members of the public is not likely to give infection spa pedicure fish, however, the risk will be higher for certain people. “

Dr. Kilbride said salons must first check your customers have no underlying health problems that could put at risk, and scrutinize their feet to make that there are no cuts, grazes or infectious skin conditions.

Dr. Paul Cosford, director of protection services health HPA, said: “If a member of the public is concerned about the level of cleanliness of a salon visit, must report this to your local environmental health department. ‘

the HPA guidance has been endorsed by the Chartered Institute of environmental health and the Royal environmental health Institute of Scotland.

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