After Kate received tummy tuck surgery, otherwise known as an abdominoplasty, she was shocked and distraught with what she discovered under the dressing.
The results were not what she expected at all, and she didn’t know what to do next. Learn how Kate managed to gain compensation and closure from the negligent surgery, putting her life back on track again.
Hear Kate’s Story (transcript):
I’ve got two children – this is Sophie and this is George. I didn’t really have many stretch marks but after the birth of George I was left with a lot of excess skin and it made my tummy look really flabby and deflated. I hated it, really hated it. I didn’t like looking at myself in the mirror, I wouldn’t let my husband see me naked.
We always went on family holidays to France. Spending all day at the beach or by the pool in a bikini but the last time we went I just stayed in the shade, covered up. There was no way I was going to wear a bikini. And then we just stopped going on holiday. It got to the stage where my husband could see just how unhappy it was making me and suggested I did something about it.
So I started looking online, did some research and then made a few enquiries. And I eventually plucked up the courage to have a tummy tuck, or an abdominoplasty as it is called. I had never had any, sort of, operation before. But the surgeon reassured me it was a really popular procedure, loads of people had it. And after I had t done, he said it was “text book” and that everything should heal nicely.
It was about a week into my recovery, I think, when I was at home I was able to remove the dressing. I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to see how it looked. I stood in front of the mirror, peeled back the dressing and then I just cried.
I was told the scar would be above the knicker line but it was way above the knicker line. And worse still, it was completely crooked. I just felt sick.
It had taken a lot of courage for me to have the procedure and the results were just…ugly. I went back the surgeon and I told him I wasn’t happy. He had said I had given him full consent for the procedure. I was so incensed. Yes, I’d consented to the scar placement, but the scar was completely visible above the knicker line which, it just wasn’t what we agreed.
He finally acknowledged that the scar was very high and he suggested revision surgery. I didn’t have the money to pay again and I didn’t want to go through a year of waiting the first scar to heal, I certainly didn’t want the same surgeon going anywhere near me.
I just felt lost, I didn’t know what to do so I started searching online for help. That’s where I found the Cosmetic Surgery Claims website. It had loads of helpful advice and I booked a free telephone consultation.
The solicitor was lovely, really lovely, he had a background in healthcare and he just seemed to get me. I told him my story and he asked if I could send some photographs of the scar. And then they said they would assess my case and come back to me on whether they thought I had a claim for negligence.
It was a massive relief when I got the call to say yes. We then had a face to face meeting to discuss the case in more detail. They explained that they would conduct a full review of the medical records to fully understand all the facts of the case, and would find a medical expert to give their opinion as well.
I was a bit worried there might be some hidden costs but they made it really clear that it was a “no win no fee” agreement. That you would only pay if the case was successful. And the percentage would be taken out of the final settlement. And I couldn’t have asked for more, I was really happy with that.
Following the meeting everything just began to happen. I got regular updates keeping me informed of where the case was at, how much my claim was worth, and what was going on.
It was just a huge relief to have someone just take control of the situation. And so I was able to get back on with life, really.
I received regular emails and phone calls letting me know how everything was progressing. And it was one of those calls where they said the defendant had accepted the settlement offer. It’s hard to put into words actually. I think it was because it was a massive deal to have the surgery in the first place and when things went wrong, I just felt abandoned.
But when CSC took over they really gave me hope that things could get sorted. And then when the settlement offer came through, I think it was just a huge relief that I was right. That I was justified to have questioned the surgeon's work.
I’ve not decided yet whether I am going to have the corrective surgery, but for now I just want to let everything settle down and celebrate that everything is all over. But we have decided to go back to France, we are going there next summer. The kids cannot wait, they are so excited. We just thought it would be a really nice way, as a family, to bring the chapter to a close. And celebrate the great outcome that we got.
If believe you've also fallen victim to medical negligence, contact the Cosmetic Surgery Claims team for a confidential, obligation free discussion on 0300 303 3632 ot Start Your Claim here.