Cosmetic Surgery Gone Wrong

A woman sought elective facial injections, in an effort to look more “rested.”  The result was necrosis that left permanent, deep scarring.

The Washington State Supreme Court ruled on an appeal of this decision March 12, 2015.

The clinic’s receptionist (!) had recommended a mix of Botox and a “filler.” Later, a physician’s assistant injected Botox and Restylane. Restylane was fairly new at the time, but now carries a warning against use in the region of the forehead where the woman had the injection.

The woman experienced redness and tightness in her forehead. This quickly progressed to blistering sores and green pustules. She returned, and the physician’s assistant diagnosed the reaction as an infection and provided follow-up care for infection. The follow-up care did not work.

The woman then got a second opinion. Another provided correctly diagnosed necrosis – death of tissue. The Restylane had expanded to such a degree that it had constricted blood flow to the skin in her forehead.

She sues the dermatology clinic and the doctor who owned the clinic. For reasons not discussed in the Court of Appeals opinion, the woman’s attorney did not name the doctor who was responsible for supervising the physician’s assistant.

The trial court dismissed the doctor who owned the clinic because there was never a physician-client relationship between the woman and that particular doctor.  The woman appealed. The Washington Court of Appeals upheld the result.

lawblog disclaimer

By personal injury attorney Travis Eller

See Paetsch v. Spokane, unpublished (No. 30688-7-III, Dec. 26, 2013) available at

Posted in Medical Malpractice and tagged , .