Going under the knife is a delicate process; you want it to go right, yet unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Fuan Chan speaks to us on why cases appear in court and how to protect yourself from negligence in the aesthetic industry.
What are common cases you are instructed on as an expert witness?
- Post-traumatic facial injury
- Scar post-surgical intervention
- Aesthetic issues after cosmetic surgery and non-surgical facial rejuvenation
Why are these cases so common and what do you think professionals should do to avoid legal sanction?
You need to have a good consultation and establish good rapport with the patient and properly assess and manage your patient’s expectations. Patient selection is also crucial and the surgeon ought to well inform patients so that they can made an educated decision. I would also suggest a cooling period of two weeks and a second consultation or more, if indicated and necessary to ensure the above points are met.
Finally, and most importantly, you must learn to say no to the patient if it is in the best interest of the patient and your practice and its credibility.
Do you think there needs to be tighter regulations on aesthetics in order to avoid legal cases?
Yes. There is lack of regulation in the aesthetic sector. Tighter regulations help to protect patient safety by ensuring only the fully trained and accredited healthcare professionals are allowed to perform aesthetic or cosmetic surgery. Tighter regulations also help to eliminate, if not minimise, the issue of non-specialist doctors carrying out cosmetic surgery in non-accredited facilities, which again, is putting patient safety at risk.
With aesthetics making rapid advancement in society, how would you advise clients to keep on top, to ensure their practitioner is ‘up-to-date’ and will offer the best treatment?
One of the most important elements of any surgery or treatment – from abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) to a facelift to a ‘nose job’ to a Botox injection -, is the skill and experience of the practitioner. You should go to a reliable and highly experienced plastic surgeon who is fully accredited. They should also be experienced in the particular treatment you are going to them for. A good plastic surgeon will be able to share how often they have performed the treatment in question and show examples of before and after results.
A plastic, reconstructive and cosmetic surgeon should be properly accredited. Here in Ireland they should hold FRCSI(Plast) or FRCS(Plast) qualifications and also be an accredited consultant plastic surgeon. The cosmetic surgeon’s professional profile often is readily available on accredited professional societies such as Irish Association of Plastic Surgeon and also will hold active full membership of international societies such as American Association of Plastic Surgeons or International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery or Aesthetic Plastic or The American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.
The next step is making a preliminary enquiry with the clinic regarding the treatment. If the response is positive, attending a face to face consultation will often enable the client to have a sense of the ‘quality’ and ‘standard’ of the cosmetic surgeon.
Mr. Fuan Chan MD FRCSI(Plast)
Suite 14, Blackrock Clinic
+353 (0)1 206 4219
Mr. Fuan Chan MD FRCSI(Plast) is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, the first Consultant Plastic Surgeon in Ireland of Chinese descent. He is a fully accredited Consultant Plastic Surgeon and an IAPS (Irish Association of Plastic Surgeons) full member. He is also an international full member of The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), which is the most prestigious and recognised membership for any fully-accredited and qualified Consultant Plastic Surgeon in the world. He is also a full member of highly regarded International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.
He started private practice in the Blackrock Clinic, the leading private hospital in Dublin, Ireland since 2015. Mr Chan specialises in cosmetic plastic surgery, non-surgical rejuvenation (botox & fillers), skin cancer surgery, acute plastics trauma surgery and reconstructive surgery.
Mr. Fuan Chan is so far the only Consultant Plastic Surgeon in Ireland that has completed a one-year fellowship in UCLA, Los Angeles, which gave him the opportunity to work with many leading Plastic Surgeons in Los Angeles who are affiliated to UCLA. He has earned numerous awards and gold medals in plastic surgery at national and international scientific meetings with more than 25 peer-reviewed publications and delivered more than 30 presentations at plastic surgery scientific meetings in Ireland, Europe, USA and Asia.
Mr. Fuan Chan MD FRCSI(Plast) is equipped with excellence in medico-legal report writing, courtroom skills and Cross-examination skills. He has been instructed to write medical reports and instructed on as an expert witness.