October 18, 2011
Fish foot spa pedicures could spread diseases such as HIV and hepatitis C, health experts have warned.
The government’s Health Protection Agency said those with diabetes, psoriasis or a weak immune system are particularly vulnerable and should not take part in the beauty craze at all.
In new guidance to be published today, they said the risk of infection for users of the increasingly popular treatment, in which dozens of tiny fish nibble dead skin from customers’ feet, is ‘low but could not be completely excluded’.
The agency says fish tank water contains micro-organisms and believes problems could arise from bacteria being transmitted by the pedicure’s garra rufa fish, from the spa water itself or from one customer to another if the water is not changed.