Cosmetic surgery has become very popular in recent times and the market in Ireland is estimated as worth close on €50 million. Unfortunately, clinics in Ireland offering cosmetic surgery are unregulated and practitioners may have inadequate training or may not have the professional credentials and experience to carry out cosmetic surgical procedures.
Prior to having elective surgery your doctor must inform you of the risks involved so that you can make an informed decision as to whether or not you wish to go ahead with a procedure. If you were not fully advised of the risks prior to your procedure you may be entitled to claim compensation if something goes wrong.
The term cosmetic surgery is used to describe the reshaping of the body and face and sometimes deeper structures for aesthetic purposes. Initially plastic surgery techniques were developed for the purposes of reconstruction, for example to treat someone who has been injured. Over time however and with advances in medical technology it has been possible to develop techniques to enhance physical appearance and correct scars and blemishes.
Types of Cosmetic Surgery
There are many different types of cosmetic surgery now available. Some of the most common procedures in Ireland include:
- Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)
- Breast augmentation
- Breast reduction
- Chin/cheek reshaping
- Eyelid reduction
- Face lifts
- Mastopexy (breast lift)
- Scar reduction
- Silicone implants (breast, buttocks, calf, cheek and chin)
- Setting back prominent ears.
- In relation to surgical cosmetic procedures and cosmetic dentistry there are a number of non-invasive cosmetic treatments available such as botox, dermal fillers and laser treatment. As these are not considered surgical, they are sometimes carried out by establishments that are not monitored, regulated or controlled in the same way.
Consequences of cosmetic procedures
Common problems caused by negligently performed cosmetic procedures include:
- Nerve damage
- Skin damage
- Psychological trauma
- Anaesthetic related problems
In order to be eligible to make plastic and cosmetic surgery injury claims in Ireland, you must have sustained a quantifiable injury – physical, psychological or both – due to the negligence of a plastic surgeon or an agent of the clinical facility at which you underwent the procedure.
Plastic and cosmetic surgery injury claims in Ireland can be made against an administrator, technician or surgeon´s assistant if it is their error which has led to your injury. Cosmetic surgery claims for compensation would still be treated the same as medical negligence claims, as employees of a clinical facility are considered to be agents of that facility.
Even the most straightforward procedure can cause very serious problems if negligently performed resulting in pain and discomfort, permanent disfigurement and, in very extreme cases, death. If you have had a substandard cosmetic procedure or have had avoidable postoperative complications you may be entitled to pursue a medical negligence compensation claim.