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Unauthorized 'vampire facials' lead to HIV scare at Albuquerque spa

By
Ray Downs

Sept. 13 (UPI) -- The New Mexico Department of Health this week said customers of an Albuquerque spa may have been exposed to HIV or other infectious diseases while receiving injection-related services.

The notice specifically referred to a service known as a "vampire facial," where blood is drawn from a person's body and then injected it back into the face using micro needles. The service is supposed to make skin look younger and softer.

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But the NMDH is telling anybody who received injection-related services from the VIP Spa in Albuquerque between May and June 2018 to get tested for free at Albuquerque's Midtown Public Health Office.

The NMDH inspected the spa on Sept. 7 after after a client of the spa reported an infection. The agency said it then found practices there that could "potentially spread blood-borne infections such as HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C to clients."

The spa was conducting the injection procedures without a license and has now been shut down.

VIP Spa owner Luly Ruiz told KOAT-TV she uses only disposable needles.

"I open them in front of my clients every time they come," Ruiz said.

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She also said she is cooperating with state health officials and encourages former clients to get tested.

"I want everybody to be sure, everybody to be happy and to know they don't have anything," Ruiz said.

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