CDC probing illnesses linked to fake Botox in 9 states

The CDC is working with the FDA to investigate at least 19 reports of harmful reactions linked to counterfeit or mishandled Botox injections in nine states. Nine of the patients were hospitalized, the agency said. 

Cases have been detected in Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Tennessee and Washington. The individuals reported harmful reactions after receiving botulinum toxin injections from unlicensed or untrained people or said they received them in nonhealthcare settings, such as homes and spas. All of the reports came from women between the ages of 25 to 59. 

They reported experiencing vision problems, drooping eyelids, difficulty swallowing, dry mouth, slurred speech, breathing difficulties, fatigue and general weakness. 

Four of the nine patients who were hospitalized were treated with botulism antitoxin due to concerns that the product "could have spread beyond the injection site," the CDC said. The other five patients who were hospitalized tested negative for botulism. 

The agency said public health and regulatory officials found some of the people received injections with fake products or products with "unverified sources." The investigation is ongoing. 

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