FACTS:

The Complainant named Alphaben Goraniya, aged 43 years approached Dr. Vishal Patel seeking cure for rashes on her neck. As she was overweight, the doctor persuaded her to undergo surgery that would help her shed 35 kgs and bring her back into shape.

On 20 October, 2013, the Complainant underwent an abdominoplasty and the doctor removed excessive fat from her abdomen. However the Complainant did not feel that she was on the benefitting side following the procedure and later she also developed white patches on the surgical site.

In 2015, the Complainant’s weight shot up to 115 kgs and was advised to undergo bariatric surgery. The Complainant being dissatisfied by the services filed a complaint against Dr. Patel before the District Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission for removing her naval without consent and for the belly flopping of the surgery as even after the tummy tuck procedure, she gained weight.

DOCTOR’S DEFENCE:

  • The doctor denied the fact that the belly button had been removed without informing the patient and also submitted that the patient clearly had not taken proper care during post-operative treatment.
  • He further state that the surgery was for reshaping of the body and not for slashing of kilos as she had approached him for the surgical removal of excess skin and fat from her abdomen and to correct her navel’s shape.

COURT HELD:

  • The Court after going through the photographs observed that the woman’s naval could not be seen and there was only stretch mark on the area where surgery was performed

The Court held that the doctor failed to provide service as an aesthetic surgeon because the woman’s belly button was sealed and that the damage was caused due to negligence as the Complainant’s weight increased even after the surgery and she thereby suffered mental agony. Besides awarding the compensation of Rs. 2 lakhs with 8% interest, the Court asked doctor to pay the Complainant Rs. 7,000 extra for other costs.