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Spa owner pleads guilty for performing surgery without license

In April, we wrote about two men who were charged with illegally performing surgery. Performing surgery without a medical license turns what would otherwise be claims of surgical errors and medical malpractice into potential criminal charges. Recently, the owner of a spa in Queens pleaded guilty to the same charges for illegally performing a liposuction procedure on a woman. The procedure resulted in a life-threatening infection for the woman.

The victim suffered high fever and was admitted to Flushing Hospital with bilateral buttock abscesses. She had to undergo emergency surgery and spent five days in the hospital.

According to the Queens District Attorney's Office, the woman charged owns two spas in Corona, but does not have a medical license. Over 100 people agreed to sign consent forms with the spa owner to have substances injected into their buttocks, but the victim at hand was the only one who actually underwent liposuction.

Sentencing for the spa owner is Aug. 8, and she will likely receive a two-year prison term. As part of the guilty plea she is to sign a confession of judgment for $130,000 and pay restitution in the amount of $50,000.

One of the dangers associated with this type of case is the increasingly commonplace decision to undergo elective plastic surgery. Elective plastic surgery procedures are discussed casually in the media and in social circles, and this casual conversation may lead people to believe that the procedures are less serious. These procedures are anything but casual and always require a doctor's license.

The resulting injuries from injections and liposuction of this nature can lead to permanent deformities and even death. Anyone considering cosmetic surgery should diligently research and ensure that a licensed and reputable doctor performs the surgery.

Source: DNAinfo, "Queens Spa Owner Pleads Guilty to Illegally Performing Surgery," Ben Fractenberg, May 30, 2012

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