• Kyodo

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The National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan has issued a warning after receiving reports of some 20 cases of people developing burns and swollen skin from a beauty treatment involving the use of an ultrasonic device over the past four years.

The High Intensity Focused Ultrasound device, or HIFU, is usually used to treat prostatomegaly. It generates ultrasonic waves to create heat under the skin without damaging the surface, the center said Thursday.

At least 20 beauty salons boast on their websites that their HIFU treatments can reduce fat or make faces slimmer. It is illegal for aestheticians who don’t have a doctor’s license to use the device.

One report last October was from a woman in her 30s from Kanagawa Prefecture who suffered abdominal burns after the treatment. Another woman, also in her 30s from Aichi Prefecture, reported to the center in November 2015 that her face had swollen and that she had developed blisters and other wounds.

Salons have claimed the treatment is safe while failing to warn customers of the burn risk, the consumer center said.

The center urged people not to undertake the treatment at beauty salons without looking into the risks first.

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