Test Positive for HIV After Getting Vampire Facials at New Mexico Spa

Test Positive for HIV After Getting Vampire Facials at New Mexico Spa

Both people visited the spa between May and September 2018 to receive vampire facials, in which a person's blood is drawn and injected into their own face to help replenish the skin.

Owner Luly Ruiz told KOAT News in September that she was cooperating with the health department, but only used disposable needles, and took care to open each new needle in front of her client.

The VIP Spa in Albuquerque, New Mexico, was closed by health officials after it was determined two clients tested positive for HIV.

The downtown spa was closed in 2018 after an inspection revealed certain practices at the spa could spread infectious diseases.

"Additional laboratory testing on specimens from the two clients indicates recent infection with the same HIV virus - increasing the likelihood that the two HIV infections may have resulted from a procedure at the VIP spa", the agency said in a statement.

Kathy Kunkel, the NMDOH's cabinet secretary, said more than 100 clients of the VIP Spa have already been tested.

Casa de Salud Family Medical Office - 1608 Isleta Blvd.

Vampire facials gained popularity after Kim Kardashian West posted an Instagram photo of herself after undergoing the facial in 2013 at a different spa facility.

Yet if the micro-needling pen or any other equipment is not properly disposed of or sterilized between facials, that could expose patients to potential blood-borne infections, as what was seen in New Mexico, Dr. Ehsan Ali, a board-certified internal medicine physician known as the Beverly Hills Concierge Doctor, said a year ago. If the micro-needling pen, for instance, isn't properly sterilized between multiple clients' procedures, then customers could be exposed to blood-borne diseases. The Regulation and Licensing Department noted that the spa did not employ a licensed professional to draw blood.

Anyone receiving beauty treatments involving needle injections should verify the services are being provided by a licensed medical provider.

"I want everybody to be sure, everybody to be happy, and to know they don't have anything", she said.

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