Over the years we have seen a significant increase in the number of liposuction operations and while regulations in the health and beauty market have tightened, we still see instances of negligence during liposuction procedures. If you have suffered an injury because of negligence in a liposuction procedure you may be eligible to claim compensation for your injuries.
Common Injuries Associated With Liposuction
Some of the more common injuries associated with liposuction procedures include:
- Scarring due to the small entry point slits and potential complications. In the majority of cases the area will heal and any scarring will fade although this may take between 12 and 18 months. In some circumstances scars could become thicker and red in colour and may require corrective surgery.
- A number of liposuction procedures will result in a degree of discomfort similar to friction burns as the machine is in operation. While these tend to be short term side effects, in some circumstances they can result in further complications.
- When you bear in mind the fairly basic instruments behind liposuction it is no surprise to learn that bruising and bleeding will occur with the vast majority of procedures. Any form of discomfort tends to be short term but there are instances of infection and complications which may require additional treatment
- The removal of fat via the liposuction method is fairly crude and sometimes it is not possible to ensure asymmetry. Where the impact is severe, additional fat can be injected to balance the impacted areas.
- In some cases the removal of excess fat can leave “holes” in the body which may be filled by other bodily fluids. This side-effect is known as seroma and in the vast majority of cases it will require additional treatment to remove the fluid.
- Infection and swelling are probably not as common as many people expect especially when you bear in mind the insertion of foreign bodies and entry point cuts. However, they do occur and in some cases there may well be additional issues and complications.
- Reduced sensation is not necessarily a common occurring side-effect of liposuction but there will be instances where it happens. The vast majority of cases will involve relatively temporary reduced sensation but nerve damage and other issues can create permanent damage.
- Whether allergic to the anaesthetic, fluid used to break down the fat content or any other materials used during the liposuction procedure, allergic reactions can be severe and potentially life-threatening. It is therefore imperative that questions are asked and tests are carried out before the main procedure.
- While those carrying out liposuction procedures should be highly trained, we have seen instances of substandard training leading to potentially serious damage to body organs. While these issues may be temporary or permanent, in some instances they can be life-threatening.
When you consider the fairly crude details of the liposuction procedure it is not difficult to see why there may well be potential side-effects. It is the role of the medical practitioner to ensure that all patients are aware of potential side-effects and any allergies are noted. Where a practitioner has been negligent prior to, during or after the procedure, there may be a case for compensation. Simple disappointment with the eventual outcome, assuming the patient’s expectations were managed by the practitioner, is not necessarily negligence.
Compensation For Liposuction Negligence
It is not difficult to see where there may be possible issues with regards to liposuction negligence which could lead to compensation claims. Two of the main areas include facial injuries and psychiatric problems as a consequence of injuries received and we have listed the advised compensation figures below. You can also use the compensation calculator further down the page for other injuries.
Facial Injuries Compensation Amounts
- Those looking to reduce elements of fat around their face area may incur a degree of scarring as a consequence of negligence. Relatively mild scarring will attract compensation from £1,360 up to £2,810.
- Scarring which can be camouflaged and does not necessarily change the look of the person can lead to compensation of between £3,150 and £10,960.
- Significant scarring can be a problem with liposuction around the face and where it leads to relatively minor corrective plastic surgery and/or short-term psychological problems, compensation from £7,270 up to £23,980 may be available.
- Severe scarring towards the lesser end of the spectrum will attract compensation of between £14,320 and £38,600 with very severe scarring, involving significant disfigurement and psychological issues, can lead to compensation of between £23,740 and £77,580.
Psychiatric Damage Compensation Amounts
- Psychiatric damage described as “less severe” tends to involve a temporary impact on the person’s daily activities, sleeping patterns and potential disability. Facial disfigurement can lead to increased anxiety and potentially encourage additional phobias. Where the impact is relatively short lived, compensation from £1,220 up to £4,670 may be available.
- Moderate psychiatric damage which impacts the person’s ability to cope with everyday life, relationship with friends and family, increased vulnerability but where treatment can minimise the long-term impact, can attract compensation from £4,670 up to £15,200.
- Moderately severe psychiatric issues will impact an individual’s long-term ability to work, lead to increased stress and anxiety with treatment offering some hope but little chance of a long-term remedy. In this case compensation from between £15,200 and £43,710 may be available.
- Severe psychiatric issues brought on by complications as a consequence of liposuction treatment which impact a person’s working and personal life, prompt stress and anxiety issues with a poor long-term prognosis can see payouts of between £43,710 and £92,240.
In some ways it is the psychological impact on a person’s life which attracts the higher levels of compensation although there are obvious serious injuries which also attract significant awards.
Filing A Liposuction Negligence Claim
There is a three year time limit in which to claim compensation for liposuction negligence. Central to any liposuction negligence claim is the ability to prove negligence on behalf of the medical practitioner which directly led to the injuries received. Evidence may include pre and post procedure photographs of the area in question, advice and warnings offered (or not offered) by the practitioner, examinations by an independent third party, medical records as well as details of basic health and hygiene in the establishment.
In many cases there will be a need for a degree of corrective surgery/ treatment although at the first opportunity it is advisable to contact a personal injury solicitor to discuss the strength of any negligence claim.
As cosmetic procedures are more commonplace today, the majority of personal injury solicitors will have some experience with liposuction injuries and negligence claims. A free consultation (which we provide) will allow a solicitor to review the details of your claim and any supporting evidence. Most consultations take around 10 minutes during which time the solicitor can usually conclude whether there is a liposuction negligence claim and how likely it is to be successful. Most personal injury solicitors will take a liposuction negligence claim on if they feel it’s a strong claim and usually will do so on a No Win No Fee basis.
If you would like to speak with a solicitor about filing a liposuction negligence claim please get in touch today.