Leading Cosmetic Surgery Negligence Solicitor Mike Saul exposes the potential dangers of the newly popular procedure.

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TJL Solicitors

Today we’re talking with Mike Saul, head of Cosmetic Surgery Negligence at Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors and one of the UK’s leading experts in cosmetic surgery negligence.

He will be discussing what can happen when cosmetic surgery goes wrong – in particular, looking at the buttock augmentation procedure that has grown to be so popular in recent times.

We are exposed to hundreds of celebrity body shapes deemed ‘perfect’ by the media each day. Currently, the curves are in, meaning the likes of Kim Kardashian, Beyonce and Jennifer Lopez are being praised for their curvaceous behinds.

‘A high number of our clients come to us having been strongly influenced directly by the media’s promotion of beauty,’ comments Mike.

With this in mind, it’s not surprising to learn that there has been a 200% increase in the number of UK enquiries for the buttock augmentation procedure (or ‘Brazilian Butt Lifts’). Kim Kardashian is cited as the inspiration for nearly half of all buttock augmentations in the UK, in the past year alone.

However, the media often changes perceptions of beauty (remember the days when Nicole Richie was adored for her lean physique?), meaning the strive for this ‘perfection’ is unhealthy and unobtainable for the public to aspire to.

‘It’s so important that an individual is completely sure that the surgery will benefit their health and well-being, and isn’t an attempt to emulate celebrities who are currently being marketed as “beautiful”,’ says Mike.

Cosmetic surgery is not a quick-fix option; there are numerous risks associated with such invasive surgery, including falling victim to cosmetic surgery negligence.

So what is Cosmetic Surgery Negligence?

‘Cosmetic surgery negligence can be defined as any damage to the body that is not within reason expected or acceptable, following a cosmetic procedure.’

Mike Saul’s must-ask FAQs to discuss with your surgeon:

Chat extensively with your surgeon until you are sure the decision to have a buttock augmentation is best for you. Topics to discuss include;

Desired outcome

Many patients have unrealistic expectations about how the surgery will alter their physique. You may have an image of an outcome that isn’t physically possible to achieve, due to your skin or body shape. Chat honestly with your surgeon about your desired look so you can both reach a realistic compromise.

How long will the effects last?

It’s crucial to learn how long the effects of the surgery will last. Buttock augmentation surgery is typically long-lasting, and the fat will grow and age as you do. However, no cosmetic procedure has life-long effects, so follow-up surgery may be needed.

Financial responsibilities

If you are going to need follow-up surgery, consider the costs. Talk to your surgeon – how often will you require further surgery? How will this be financed?

Recovery time

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Your surgeon should tell you how long you need to wait until normal activity levels can be resumed. Your surgeon should also detail everything from common symptoms experienced, to how to sit and lie down, and give you a comprehensive recovery time frame. Gain as much information as you can.

Surgeon experience

Always choose a surgeon based on;

• Certification, education and training
• Their experience with performing buttock augmentations
• The comfort level you feel with him or her.

Post-surgery contact

If you decide to proceed, be sure to maintain the relationship with your surgeon afterwards. Please ensure you keep to all follow-up appointments. Safeguard yourself by monitoring your buttocks regularly and contact your surgeon if you notice any changes, or have any concerns.

‘For more guidance about how to prepare for making a decision about cosmetic surgery, you can read our S.A.F.E Choice Surgery Guide here,’ says Mike

Mike Saul’s Advice: What to do if your surgery goes wrong:

It’s essential that you know how to identify the basic signs that something might not be quite right with your surgery, Mike says.

With buttock augmentation, potential complications include;
• Loss of sensation in the buttock area
• Asymmetry in the buttock caused by the fat being reabsorbed. Fat absorption, in some cases up to 40%, can alter how one buttock looks from another. You may require further fat grafting to rebalance the aesthetics of your buttock.
• Excessive scarring
• Hematoma or seroma (a buildup of blood or fluid under the skin, that may need to be removed).
• Damage to underlying structures
• Untreated infection
• Disfigurement
• An adverse reaction to general anaesthetic including;
• Death (approximately 1 death for every 100,000 general anaesthetics given)
• Anaphylaxis

Poor surgical technique and neglect during and post-surgery are also factors to be aware of, as you may have a case for a claim.
When should you consider making a claim for cosmetic surgery negligence?
When should you consider making a claim for cosmetic surgery negligence?

With buttock augmentations, post-operative swelling can last between 3 – 6 months before the full effect of this surgery is apparent. However, if you notice any of the complications listed above, it may be in your best interest to explore the claims process.

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It is, of course, natural to feel some pain once the anaesthesia wears off, however, if the pain is extreme contact your surgeon. Similarly, swelling can last for weeks or months. It’s important that you contact your surgeon to assess if this is normal.

Be sure to follow exact instructions that your surgeon may give you to help aid recovery – such as lying only on your front, wearing a body garment for 6-8 weeks, no exercise for at least eight weeks and so on.

What advice would you give to someone who thinks they have suffered at the hands of a negligent surgeon?

‘Many victims suffer in silence following negligent surgery. This can be down to low-self esteem and confidence as well as a lack of knowledge.

‘People may not know they have a case for a claim.

‘We would urge anyone who thinks they have received negligent cosmetic surgery to call us in confidence,” says Mike. “Don’t be embarrassed or ashamed. We are here to help you, and we’re on your side.’

Mike Saul is the head of Cosmetic Negligence at Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors, the first specialist legal department in England and Wales committed to helping those who have suffered from Cosmetic Surgery Negligence.

Mike is widely recognised across the media having been featured in the BBC, Daily Mail and The Observer, as well as television programmes such as ITV’s ‘The Real Cost of Beauty” and BBC1’s ‘Inside Out’, to name but a few.

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