"A slippery slope": a scoping review of the self-injection of unlicensed oils and fillers as body enhancement



Brennan R, Overbye M, Van Hout MC & McVeigh J (2021) "A slippery slope": a scoping review of the self-injection of unlicensed oils and fillers as body enhancement. Performance Enhancement and Health.

Self-injection of a range of oils and fillers for body enhancement dates back to 1899, but due to significant associated harms and fatalities this practice has been largely linked to distinct cultural groups in recent times. This scoping review gathers what is currently known on the self injection of body fillers for aesthetic purposes, using Arksey and O’Malley’s (2005) five stage iterative process scoping review methodology. Thematic manual coding then organised the data into themes through identified patterns: indicative profiling of individuals who self inject body fillers; motivation for use across types of oil injection; sourcing routes and documented harms. It was found that the majority of people who inject body fillers are male and do so to grossly increase muscle size. Injection of oils and other materials in the male genitalia was also described, in addition to female self-injection in the breast, hand and leg areas for augmentation. A range of health consequences were reviewed. Recommendations are made for further research into this unique phenomenon, which although is relatively rare warrant future research attention considering the documented increase in DIY facial fillers and contemporary body image culture.

Body image enhancement; Human enhancement drugs; DIY body enhancement; Self injection of body fillers; Negative body image

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

Performance Enhancement and Health

StatusIn Press
Publication date online13/01/2021
Date accepted by journal11/12/2020

People (1)


Dr Marie Overbye
Dr Marie Overbye

Lecturer in Sport Management, Sport