Many cosmetic surgery procedures are perfectly safe, and clients are healthy afterwards and happy with the results. But any surgery is dangerous, and not all plastic surgery operations leave us looking the way we expected or were promised.
If you are injured due to the negligence of a plastic surgeon or their staff, you could have a valid medical malpractice or other legal claim. How much that claim could be worth depends on many factors, including the extent of injury you've suffered and the type of lawsuit you are filing. Here are some basic damages considerations in plastic surgery lawsuits.
Most medical malpractice lawsuits award compensatory damages only, which cover expenses surrounding injury, lost income, and projected future medical costs, all based on the premise that your plastic surgeon breached a professional duty of care to you. This can occur in any cosmetic surgery gone bad:
- Common surgical errors, like wrong-site surgeries or scarring
- Implant malfunctions, like drifting or rupture
- Nerve damage
- Wrongful death
If you can prove the plastic surgeon or their employees or contractors fell below the standard of care of the reasonable doctor or hospital in same or similar circumstances, you could be entitled to compensatory damages. Malpractice claims, however are not easy, and generally require expert testimony and complex medical reports along with experienced legal counsel.
Even if the cosmetic surgery goes well, surgeons can be held liable for other forms of misconduct. Plastic surgeons have been sued for:
- Posting patients nude photos to their commercial website without permission;
- Dancing during surgical procedures; and
- Posting photos of alleged "cocaine nose" online.
If the misconduct is truly egregious you may be entitled to punitive damages, which are a form of financial punishment.
Talk to a Lawyer
For a more thorough determination of potential damages in your plastic surgery case, speak with a lawyer who has experience in medical malpractice and privacy claims. State laws may vary and may contain statutory limitations on recovery, known as damages caps. Many attorneys consult for free or a minimal fee, so don't hesitate to contact a lawyer for help today.
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