*The contents in this blog relates to legislation in New South Wales.

Body modification has become increasingly popular, particularly amongst young women. It is not difficult to find practitioners who offer body modification services.

In some instances, the line has been blurred between minor cosmetic and others that require the expertise of a plastic and reconstructive specialist surgeon.  There are some service providers who falsely hold themselves out to be certified and capable of performing complex body modification procedures that should only be performed by specialist plastic surgeons.

Patients must take great care when deciding to undergo body modification procedures as not all practitioners that offer those procedures are adequately qualified to safely perform them.

The Health Care Complaints Commission of NSW (the ‘Commission’) investigated a complaint concerning an unregistered health practitioner who was engaging in body modification. The Commission confirmed that there are certain procedures that should only be performed by health practitioners with appropriate qualifications. The Commission issued a public statement earlier this year warning the public that body modification procedures could pose a significant risk to public health and safety if not performed by appropriately qualified health professionals.

We suspect that there are practitioners performing body modification procedures without the necessary experience or expertise. Adverse outcomes following an unsuccessful body modification procedure can require additional procedures that could be costly and leave them with substantial out-of-pocket medical expenses.

Some patients may experience significant permanent disfigurement that can result in chronic pain and significantly reduce their quality of life.

A poor aesthetic outcome may also significantly impact a patient’s mental health. There may be permanent and debilitating injuries and in the most severe of cases, even death.

If you or a loved one had a poor outcome following an unsuccessful body modification procedure, you may be entitled to compensation. It is important that you get advice as to your legal options. At Turner Freeman, we have specialist medical negligence lawyers who will assess your case and provide personalised advice regarding your legal entitlements. Our medical negligence lawyers are located across NSW including in our offices in ParramattaSydneyWollongongNewcastle and Toronto.