Patients undergoing cosmetic surgery face serious risks to their health and their appearance. Even though the doctors who perform cosmetic surgery are generally highly experienced medical professionals, they occasionally make mistakes that can cause permanent injury or death.
Cosmetic surgery malpractice occurs when the doctor or healthcare facility commits a surgical error or a botched surgery during the cosmetic surgery. Other cosmetic surgery malpractice include negligent injection, postoperative infections, wrong area performed on, wrong use of drug injections.
What are the Common Cosmetic Surgery Injuries?
There are many dangers and risks that come with cosmetic surgery. The general risks for these procedures include:
- Permanent scarring, even with minimally invasive surgery;
- Excessive bleeding;
- Severe nerve damage;
- Complications from anesthesia;
- Deformed body or face; and/or
- Severe complications that lead to permanent injury or death.
How to Prevent Cosmetic Surgery Injuries?
The following tips can avoid a bad surgery and avoid cosmetic surgery malpractice:
- Put plenty of effort in researching all local cosmetic surgery doctors in the area;
- Be certain that you are getting plastic surgery for the right reasons;
- Have an understanding of what to expect and what a successful surgery will be;
- Make sure that the doctor is fully qualified and has years of experience;
- Make sure the facility you are getting surgery at is board certified;
- Be sure you are healthy at the time of surgery; and
- Make sure the doctor evaluates your current health and conditions.
Who is Liable for a Cosmetic Surgery Injury?
Doctors are considered health care professionals and must exercise a high degree of medical competency and care when performing any medical treatment or surgery.
When a doctor fails to exercise this duty of care providing the level of skill, care, and treatment that a reasonable plastic surgeon should provide under similar circumstances, the doctor could be liable for medical malpractice.
How Do I File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?
If you have undergone cosmetic surgery or treatment by a doctor, which has resulted into injury, you must first be able to prove that the doctor was actually negligent when performing the surgery.
In order to prove negligence, the following elements must be proven:
- There was a doctor-patient relationship;
- The plastic surgeon owed a duty of care to the patient;
- The duty of care was breached by the surgeon;
- The patient was actually injured as a result of the negligent breach; and
- The breach of duty was the cause of the patient’s injuries.
The most difficult element to prove in a plastic surgery malpractice suit is that of causation because sometimes plastic surgery defects do not occur until some time later and it would be hard to prove whether the doctor caused the injury or the patient.
In addition, every state has laws and statute of limitations that limit the time a plaintiff has to file a claim for damages. This time limit begins at the time the patient is injured. The time frame varies from state to state and can range from 1-5 years from the time the injury or medical malpractice occurred.
Personal injury lawsuits are very difficult especially going against hospitals and insurance companies who have their own set of lawyers to defend their malpractice claims. Hiring a experience personal injury attorney would be your best option.
What are the Remedies for Cosmetic Surgery Malpractice?
If you are able to prove negligence in a plastic surgery procedure, you may be entitled to recover damages for your medical malpractice injury. This may include:
- Medical expenses such as hospital bills;
- Prescription medications;
- Future medical costs;
- Loss of past and future wages;
- Damages caused by mental and emotional suffering; and/or
- Punitive damages if the doctor acted with criminal intent or malice.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Bring a Cosmetic Surgery Malpractice Lawsuit?
Proving the elements of a medical malpractice lawsuit can sometimes be difficult and complicating. If you have been further injured as a result of plastic surgery procedures, you may wish to speak with a experienced personal injury lawyer for advice and counseling. An personal injury lawyer may be able to assist you in recovering losses associated with the surgery.