Cosmetic Surgery – What Happens When it Goes Wrong?

Last week we learned that 2013 showed a large rise in demand for plastic surgery in the UK.

The BBC has reported that figures released by The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) show a 17% increase in cosmetic procedures, with Liposuction seeing a massive 41% increase on 2012 figures.

Breast enhancements were the most popular form of cosmetic surgery, with over eleven thousand procedures taking place in 2013. However, the quest for physical perfection was by no means limited to women—the number of men undergoing procedures is on the rise, with nose jobs being the most popular.

Rajiv Grover, a consultant plastic surgeon and president of BAAPS told the BBC, “The public are choosing tried-and-tested surgical methods rather than the magical-sounding quick fixes that fail to deliver promised results.”

Image showing markings for cosmetic surgery

Image courtesy of Victor Habbick /

Whilst it is true that for the vast majority of people, their surgery goes well and they are happy with the results—what happens when something goes wrong in either the procedure or the after-care?


The quality of treatment given by cosmetic surgeons is generally very good, but as was evident in the recent PIP breast implant scandal, mistakes can be made.

In that case, once the faulty products had been recognised, a lack of record-keeping by some surgeries meant that they were unable to trace which patients were affected by the sub-standard implants, compounding the problem.


The cosmetic surgery industry has also been labelled a “cowboy industry” by health ministers and better regulation has been called for.


Our advice at NW Law is that if you are considering having cosmetic surgery, please ensure that your elected surgeon is accredited by BAAPS. Their website has a handy section to help you find a reputable surgeon.

All members of BAAPS are fully trained plastic surgeons, are registered with the General Medical Council and are leaders in the field.

If the worst does happen and you are affected by a cosmetic procedure that has gone wrong, that is where we at NW Law can come in.


The Daily Mail recently told the shocking story of a young mother in America who fell in to a coma just an hour after having breast implant surgery, due to complications following anaesthesia. Her medical records are now being looked at to try and work out what went wrong.

Although under a different regulatory system than the UK, the case highlights an important point.

When things do go wrong, not only can instructing a solicitor help you receive compensation to get your life back on track, but it is sometimes the only way to find out exactly what has happened. Experienced lawyers can examine the evidence and the records and they will piece together the story.


Electing to have cosmetic surgery should be the beginning of a new you. Therefore, if you suffer a setback because things went wrong, you need expert and compassionate solicitors that will help you through the claims process.


At NW Law, we have experts that can help you claim compensation to get your life back on track. Our Clinical Negligence department has great experience in dealing with clients who have suffered complications from negligent medical procedures.


If you would like to discuss any concerns that arise from the issues mentioned in this article, or if you feel you have suffered following treatment, contact our friendly, compassionate team in confidence:





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