Of course, there's always the ick factor in what's scientifically called ichthyotherapy: fish are living creatures that deposit their waste products in the very water in which people are soaking. Scientists began to get indications of the kinds of microbes that could be bathing fish spa patrons' feet in April , when British authorities investigated a reported bacterial outbreak among 6, Garra rufa fish imported from Indonesia to British salons and pedicure spas.
Tests revealed the fish had been infected with Streptococcus agalactiae group B Streptococcus , bacteria that can cause pneumonia and serious infections of the bones, joints and blood in people of all ages and life-threatening infections in newborns. Last spring, British fish inspectors went to London's Heathrow Airport and intercepted Indonesian shipments of the silver, inch-long freshwater carp destined for British "fish spas. The strains were resistant to many important antimicrobial medications, including tetracyclines , fluoroquinolones drugs like Cipro, Levaquin and Avelox and aminoglycosides drugs like gentamicin, neomycin and streptomycin , said Verner-Jeffreys, an aquaculture health specialist with the Center for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science, Weymouth Laboratory in Weymouth, England.
The bacteria findings appear today in Emerging Infectious Diseases, a journal published by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, which has been monitoring health effects associated with fish pedicures. More than 10 states have banned the practice for a variety of reasons, the CDC said, including the inability to sufficiently clean fish pedicure tubs between patrons; the impossibility of disinfecting or sanitizing live fish; regulations that specify fish in a salon must be kept in an aquarium, and a humanitarian justification that to entice the fish to feed on dead human skin, they must be starved "which might be considered animal cruelty.
There have been "only been a handful of infections reported" in Great Britain, said Georgina Fletcher, a senior spokeswoman for the Health Protection Agency, which has been evaluating public health risks of fish pedicures , also called doctor fish therapy, long practiced in Turkey, India and Southeast Asia. In the United States, "there have been no published reports to date regarding illness from fish pedicures," the CDC said in a June document.
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For the promise of glowing, baby-soft footsies, would you place them into a cool basin of pint-sized, flesh-eating fish? What a relaxing atmosphere. Fish pedicures unlikely to cause infection. Relative picking up children for school finds family of 5 dead: Police. Police shoot, kill armed man in suburban St. What was your first thought we said the fish are used to exfoliate your skin? Very good 0.
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A young woman who lost all the toes on one of her feet after she had a “fish pedicure” is sharing her story and photos to warn other people. Fish pedicures have been banned in many parts of the U.S., Canada, and Europe because of the health risks and cruelty to animals inherent in.
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