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South Florida Sees Increase in Deaths Involving Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery, like any surgery, carries risks. While it is not typically as dangerous as something like open heart surgery in most cases, patients are trusting the skill, experience, and professionalism of their surgeons and anesthesiologists to not only do an aesthetically good job, but also to perform the operation in a safe manner so as not to result in serious personal injury or death. If a doctor fails to adhere to the requisite standard of care, plaintiff may need to file a medical malpractice lawsuit to obtain compensation for the damages caused.

According to a recent news article from the Miami Herald, a woman died due to complications involving what is known as a “Brazilian butt lift” operation. Specifically, the medical examiner found that clots of fat from the surgery entered her heart and lungs causing an embolism resulting in her death. In the past four years, six women, including her, have died in Miami-Dade County from complications arising from this procedure. The operation is a cosmetic procedure that involves using what is known as a liposuction cannula to remove fat from some part of a patient’s body and then taking the filtered fat and implanting into the patient’s buttocks to increase the size and/or enhance the shape of the patient’s buttocks to achieve the desired result.

In this case, there was an injury allegedly caused to the major vein in the glutteal area.  This allowed the implanted fat to enter the vein and travel through the circulatory system resulting in her death.  While it has been reported that this family doctor was not a board-certified plastic surgeon, and also did not carry medical malpractice insurance, there have been no formal reports of negligence as of this time. A statement from the American Society of Plastic Surgery said these procedures have been done for decades safely by experienced plastic surgeons.

As our West Palm Beach medical malpractice attorneys can explain, when a patient goes to a doctor to have any type of procedure performed, plastic surgery or otherwise, that doctor must adhere to the local and national standard of care for medical professionals. If they are not board certified in a particular procedure, but still decided to do it, they are representing that they have the training and experience necessary to do the procedure according to the same standard of care as a board certified and experienced professional.  If the doctor cannot competently do a procedure, it is that doctor’s responsibility to decline the operation and possibly refer the patient to someone who can.  The plaintiff is not in a position to know or understand what it means to be board-certified in a particular area of medicine and whether or not the doctor is actually competent to do the operation.

Call Freeman Injury Law — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights. Now serving Orlando, West Palm Beach, Port St. Lucie and Fort Lauderdale.

Additional Resources:

Fat clots killed woman at Miami cosmetic surgery clinic, medical examiner says, January 4, 2018, By Daniel Chang, Miami Herald

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