Are You Sure, Your Cosmetic Surgeon is Not FAKE?

The desire to look appealing is universal. Thanks to the unrealistic beauty standards of modern times, people don’t mind trying out several ways to own an attractive personality. Cosmetic surgery is a widely practiced method to fulfill this coveted wish. While many genuine surgeons worldwide are performing various treatments to help people transform their visual appearance, some of them are fake as well.

Business Insider reports that numerous unlicensed practitioners are carrying out cosmetic procedures underground. In Thailand, people call them “bag doctors” as they wander from one client to another with just a bag that consists of all the tools they need for the invasive cosmetic procedure. They do charge less than licensed doctors in certified clinics, but the risk of something going wrong is always there.

Why do people approach fake doctors?
Despite being aware of these bag doctors, people still prefer to undergo the treatment through them to save their money. Unfortunately, these fake doctors are not abundant in Thailand alone. Instead, you can find them everywhere.

Nevertheless, in several places, these spurious doctors pretend to be certified plastic surgeons. The result is horrible for the patients. Carlos Hernandez Fernandez from Mexico was one such impostor who faked himself as a genuine surgeon. He botched the appearance of around 50 women, in Colorado. As a silver lining, Carlos got 6 years of imprisonment followed by an additional 6 years of probation.

Another fake doctor was imprisoned in California for unauthorized practice of medicine a few years back. He performed procedures like lip and face fillers, Botox injections, and threat-lift on Latina women

Consequences of surgical blunders by fake doctors
Mistakes by these unauthorized doctors are detrimental to the patients and the overall society. At times, the damages done are irreparable. They can cause severe side effects, which are hard to get away with often. Here are some of the severe consequences of wrongly done procedures.

Botulinum Toxin injections gone wrong

A fake doctor giving Botulinum Toxin Injections to prevent wrinkles may lead the patient to face many complications:

  • Temporary blindness
  • Droopy and numb eyes
  • Problem in opening eyes
  • Swelling in lower eyelids

Improper silicone injections

When unauthorized doctors administer industrial-grade silicone injections, it can lead to the following adverse results:

  • Hardens the tissue, leaving the patient with intense pain
  • Silicone blockage, which can block the lugs and blood vessels, causing death of the patients
  • Leakage in the bloodstream, causing severe complications
  • Affects the functions of the body

Negative results of the procedures carried out in the black market

Patients often become victims to the bag doctors operating illicitly in the black market in the lure of lower surgery costs. Fake doctors do not scan through the medical history of the patients and go on to perform cosmetic surgery without knowing much about the patient’s health condition. The results could be dangerous, as the botched surgery could translate to several side effects:

  • Unbearable pain
  • Blood clots
  • Death of tissues
  • Damaged organs
  • Swelling or inflammation
  • Scars in the treated area
  • Paralysis
  • Lumps and nodules

The carelessly done cosmetic surgeries have even resulted in many death instances despite the low death rate of cosmetic surgeries in general.

Just to cite an example, inexperienced doctors often administer local anesthesia instead of general anesthesia before liposuction. This can cause the risk of injecting local anesthesia in excess, leading to respiratory problems and at times, even death.

To avert all these losses, patients should be careful enough to do detailed research work about the cosmetic surgeon before approaching one.

Spotting the fake doctors 

If you aspire to transform your appearance through cosmetic surgery, you must be vigilant to distinguish a genuine doctor from a fake one.

Qualification and Certification 

Different countries need their surgeons to have different certifications before they can perform plastic or cosmetic surgery.

  • In the USA, the doctor should have board certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS)
  • In Canada, the professionals should The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
  • In Australia, the doctor should be FRACs (Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons) qualified surgeon.

Qualification for Plastic Surgeons in India   

In India, the appropriate qualifications for a doctor to be a plastic surgeon should include

  • Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS)
  • PG degree in Plastic Surgery, which may include a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Master of Surgery (MS)
  • Three-year Plastic surgery residency program, which may include a Master of Chirurgiae (MCh) Diplomate of National Board (DNB) in Plastic surgery

Besides, the Plastic surgeons in India can have:

  • Additional fellowship and super-specialization,
  • Certification and membership from professional bodies such as the Association of Plastic Surgeons of India (APSI)
  • Registration from the State Medical Council

The Doctor’s Note
An instant glance at the way your doctor writes his or her notes will trigger the alarm if the person is a fake. A genuine doctor will abide by a set structure and format to write the name, contact details, diagnosis, etc. You will find this consistency level missing in fake notes. Myriad mistakes will further confirm the spurious identity of the person pretending to be a doctor, such as:

  • Irregular fonts and typographical errors
  • Unprofessional language
  • Informal tone of writing prescription
  • Inaccurate or no contact information at all
  • Missing medical details
  • Wrong medical terminology
  • Discrepancies in writing dates and timelines of medication
  • No doctor’s seal or signature in the medical note
  • No printed doctor’s notes, most of them are hand-written and in poor writing

Other points to consider

  • Considering these aspects in addition to the qualification, certification, and medical notes of the doctors would be advisable in spotting fake doctors.
  • The behavior of the person pretending to be a surgeon
  • Asking for before and after photos of their patients
  • Checking out their reviews online, if available
  • Looking for genuine patients who have undergone treatment through these doctors, if any
    Knowledge of the concerned person in the field of cosmetic surgery

If you wish to change your appearance through cosmetic surgery, it is advisable to be careful in the selection of your doctor. With numerous fake surgeons doing rounds in the black market, selecting genuine practitioners is of utmost importance. Remember, your decision will have a direct impact on your health and life ahead, so decide wily and smartly.

Dr. Sumit Malhotra is the best cosmetic plastic surgeon in Lucknow and is famous for his exceptional techniques used in treating his patients. With 19+ years of experience, Dr. Sumit Malhotra fully understands the human body and applies the appropriate technology needed to treat the patient’s body parts according to their desires. Dr. Sumit Malhotra currently practices in SIPS, Superspeciality Hospital, Lucknow where he has been operating since 2005.

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