Womens Health

Irish Plastic Surgeon Botches Breast Augmentation, Injures Woman

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A surgeon's treatment of a young woman after she fell ill following breast augmentation was deemed “absolutely reckless in the extreme” at an inquiry hearing last week, according to the Irish Times (http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/0521/1224297467391.html). Kate Murray, age 25, developed a serious infection following the surgical procedure. Although she returned to the clinic several times complaining of serious pain, the infection was not diagnosed until she was taken to the hospital by ambulance, nearly 3 weeks after the surgery.

By the time she was admitted to the hospital, Kate was seriously ill. She was diagnosed with sepsis, and was 'a step away' from developing necrotising fasciitis, a life-threatening condition. She spent nearly a month in the hospital and underwent 9 surgical procedures, including skin grafting, to treat the infection.

The breast augmentation surgery leading to these complications was performed by Dr. Macro Loiacono, age 35. Now he faces allegations of professional misconduct. Dr. Loiacono is accused of failing to provide Kate with proper post-surgery care, including blood tests to check for infection or a hospital referral when it became clear that she was suffering from surgical complications.

According to Dr. Peter Meagher, a consultant plastic surgeon who reviewed the case for the Medical Council, the patient wasn't seen by her surgeon for six days after the procedure, despite complaining of serious pain. He said any experienced surgeon could have seen “from 100 paces” she had an infection. She was also told not to go to the hospital, as she might pick up an infection there.

In addition to revoking his license, the inquest committee also recommended several steps to ensure cosmetic surgery clinics maintain proper standards, including pre- and post-surgery care. Dr. Meagher said he would have significant concerns about undergoing surgery in a facility that had no plan in place to treat patients who suffered post-operative complications. Cases such as this certainly underscore the need to thoroughly investigate the background of your plastic surgeon and to visit an accredited surgical facility for your procedure.