A 28-year-old Chinese woman who was encouraged to have plastic surgery by her boss has wound up looking decades older than she is after botched facial injections.
Xiao Lian from Gansu Province, first had plastic surgery when she was just 17 years old after her boss told her her face was "too thin and not conducive to the welcoming of riches", Guilin Life News reports.
Wanting a chubbier face, Xiao Lian, who is now 28, said she went to numerous plastic surgery clinics but found they were too expensive.
Eventually she chose a small clinic recommended by a friend that did not have an operating license.
Over the next month a doctor injected a substance into Xiao Lian's face 10 times and she was happy with the results.
Then in 2009 Xiao Lian noticed her face was beginning to swell and the shape of her eyes and nose was becoming distorted.
By 2013 the swelling had made Xiao Lian unrecognisable from past photos, her eyes had drooped and her hair was starting to fall out.
Xiao Lian said she went to a doctor and tests revealed she had been injected with hydrophilic polyacrylamide gel — a substance that was banned for use in cosmetic surgery after it was found to be harmful.
Xiao Lian is now undergoing corrective surgery at a cosmetic centre in Guangzhou.
But doctors have warned her that because the substance was inside her body for so long it will be difficult to fix the botched procedure.
"Even for a minor surgery you need to choose a clinic you can trust," one of the doctors said.
The rate of botched cosmetic surgery procedures has been rising around the world.
Plastic surgeons across Australia have also reported numerous customers seeking help to repair injuries from procedures they had done cheaply overseas that went wrong.
Author: Alys Francis. Approving editor: Jack Hawke.