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Spas in Turkey, the middle east, Japan and China feature Garra Rufa, also known as “doctor fishâ€, a species of fish that live in hot water. These fish consume dead skin cells directly off the bodies of people bathing in the hot spring, leaving living skin intact. This can be used as a treatment for skin diseases such as psoriasis, or it can simply work as a hi-profile skin cleansing. These spas are becoming increasingly popular. The procedure is painless; some would even say the process causes a pleasant, tingling sensation.
Wikipedia says, “The term doctor fish is the name given to two species of fish (Garra rufa, discussed here, and Cyprinion macrostomus). They live and breed in outdoor pools of some Turkish spas, where they feed on the skin of patients with psoriasis. The fish are like combfishes in that they only consume the affected and dead areas of the skin, leaving the healthy skin to grow, with the outdoor location of the treatment bringing beneficial effects. The spas are not meant as a treatment option, only as a temporary cure for symptoms, and patients usually revisit the spas every few months. Some patients have experienced complete cure of psoriasis after repeated treatments, but due to the unpredictable nature of the disease, which is strongly influenced by endogenous factors, this may simply be regression towards the mean.
“The nicknames nibble fish, kangal fish, and doctorfishen are commonly applied to both species of doctor fish. Outside the medical context, Garra rufa is called reddish log sucker.â€


I'm sorry but I think this is sick!!! I mean it's along the same lines of leeches....sorta. What do you guys think? Would you sit in a spa and let fish eat your dead skin?
 
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They had an episode like this on Ugly Betty, where the fish ate the dead skin off Wilhelmina's feet. I would maybe let the fish eat my feet (that rhymed), but I don't think I would get all they way in there! Do they transfer diseases, I wonder?

 
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I've heard of that before.. I can't imagine doing that, I'd be freaked out! But if it really cured psoriasis for some people that's great of course. But I'll just scrub to get rid of dead skin cells


 
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my mom just told me about this! she was at a spa in japan that offered it. it's actually not like leeches and more like getting super duper mini hickies

 
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I saw that on TV, they do this treatment in special spas in germany and many other countries too, I think.

It seems to work really well for people with psoriasis. If I had a skin disease that benefits from this treatment I´d do it in a second. I wouldn´t let leeches or anything on my body *ew*, but tiny fish would be tolerable I think.

 
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Oh lool. I remember I posted about this Fish peeling last year.

It is popular here now. I haven't tried it yet though.

 
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eww no thanks. I don't eat them, so it's only fair they don't eat me either!!

 
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Ummm...looks kind of gross to me, but like Andi said, if I had a skin disease and I could really benefit from it then I might consider it.

 

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