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Atlanta dermatologist has also been performing plastic surgery

One Atlanta doctor who bills herself as "Atlanta's most experienced cosmetic surgeon" has come under recent media scrutiny. She has four malpractice lawsuits pending against her. She's settled five others.

The doctor is also somewhat of a YouTube celebrity. She's posted over 20 videos in which she sings and dances in front of patients who appear to be unconscious. In one video, she even makes incisions in a patient in the midst of her performance.

The 26-year-old son of one of the doctor's patients has to tell his mother's story because she's no longer able to speak for herself. The woman was preparing to get married. She reportedly went to the doctor's office in early 2016 with the intention of getting Botox and some fillers to look her best on her wedding day. However, she was allegedly convinced to get a "tummy tuck" even though the doctor's office in Liburn isn't licensed for surgery.

According to the lawsuit, the woman was given a number of drugs prior to the procedure, but wasn't placed under general anesthesia. As the doctor was sewing up the incision, according to the suit, after the nurse anesthetist who was monitoring the woman's vital signs had already left, she suffered cardiac arrest.

First responders called to the scene stabilized her so that the doctor could finish sewing her up. The woman's son said that when he talked to the doctor at the hospital, she "made it seem like it would be fine."

It wasn't. The woman suffered irreversible brain damage and will need care for the rest of her life. That care, according to documents from the deposition, "is in excess of $13 million," according to the attorney representing the patient.

The suit was settled for an undisclosed amount. The doctor is still in practice. Although she's board-certified as a dermatologist, she's not certified to do either plastic surgery or general surgery. However, in Georgia, doctor's can legally do surgery even without that certification.

Too often, people consider cosmetic surgery a minor procedure. However, many of these procedures are complicated. Any time a person is operated on, there's a certain amount of risk. That's why it's essential to ensure that your physician has the training, experience and certification to perform the procedure you're considering. The potential consequences of inexperience are too high to risk.

Source: WSB-TV 2, "Doctor who made music videos in operating room facing several malpractice lawsuits," Jim Strickland, May 23, 2018

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