My Biggest Regret - Bay Area, CA

I was always too afraid of getting a nose job...

I was always too afraid of getting a nose job because I would often see over-projected or turned up noses and I didn’t want to look like someone else. I often found myself liking the before pictures better than the after. I was happy with my looks but did not like my bulbous tip.

One night I came across a website that had amazing before/after pictures and they were located in the bay area. I really appreciated these pictures because only the unattractive part of the nose was changed so these individuals still looked like themselves but better and with great results. I decided to make an appt. and during my first consultation, I spoke of these remarkable pictures and asked the doctor which ones were his and specifically if number 4 was his. He replied that he didn’t know because they paid someone else to create the website. I thought it was odd that he wasn’t familiar with his own website but didn’t think much of it. I told him that I didn’t like the upper section of the tip of my nose and wondered if it could be defined...contoured a little on each side so it didn’t have the ball appearance. He said he could fix that and also suggested he shave off a little of the sides of the dorsal hump area. This part of my nose has never bothered me but I figured he was the expert and knew best. I was still unsure if I wanted this surgery and had many more questions and reservations.

I had been communicating with their patient consultant and asked her which pictures belonged to this doctor as the website did not specify. She told me that she knew that number 4 was his and would ask him which others. She later emailed me and told me that 1, 4, and 6 were his work. I was very happy to hear that. Although I was nervous, I told myself the changes we were doing were very minimal and he and his website both said that he believes in a subtle approach. He made it sound like an easy fix and never mentioned any risks and his patient consultant kept telling me how happy I would be with the results and how great I would look so I decided to have it done after a couple of consultations and phone conversations with him.

He was over 3 hours late for the surgery, so by the time he took my before pictures, I had been crying for over 4 hours because of a terrible migraine. The aftercare instructions they gave me did not mention any packing and let’s just say I was not prepared for what lay ahead. It was a very emotional and depressing experience for me. This was certainly not the quick fix I thought it would be. Luckily a friend who had plastic surgery before told me that my emotions were normal and that her doctor had given her information and prepared her for this ahead of time. Unfortunately, I am unhappy with my new look and was surprised to find out that the doctor reshaped my entire nose, from between my eyes to the tip.

I can see my nostrils which resemble a snout and my profile is dramatically different. I've lost my ethnic look (Hispanic and Native American) which I had told my doctor I wanted to keep. My nose is now shorter and upturned. I looked again at the website’s before & after pictures and this time noticed that one of the patients had stated “My mom had cosmetic surgery with Dr. xxxx so I knew I was in good hands”. This implied that Dr. xxxx did her rhinoplasty, not my surgeon as I was told!! I printed these 3 pictures and during one of my following appts, I asked my doctor if these were his work. He said NO to number 4 and 6 but said number 1 was his. I told him but it references Dr. xxxx, not you. He said “umm….uh..she is a shared patient.” I sent both the doctor and his assistant an email telling them how hurt and disappointed I was to find out they had tricked me into this, and other surgeries. I mentioned my bad results because of their deception and I never got a response back from either one.

Another office assistant called me and asked if I would meet with both Doctors. I agreed but I ended up only meeting with the other doctor, who I believe may be the owner. Although he did say a few times that there were some things they needed to work on, he was very careful not to specifically admit any wrong doings from anyone in his office. He said “how do you know those patients are not his?” I told him that my Dr. told me. He said he had no recollection of what pictures were on the website and couldn’t say whose patients were whose. He said that I should be on “their team” and trust. Frankly, I would have much preferred they been on my team. At 3 months post, I’m still unable to breathe efficiently through my nose. I have an appt with an ENT. This has been a horrible experience for me and I feel like an idiot for trusting them.

At 7 months post, I’m still not happy with my...

At 7 months post, I’m still not happy with my results. Now that my tip is finally softening, I’m hopeful that it will decrease in projection. I’ve become a little self-conscious of my profile. As swelling decreases, the visible valleys/dents on the sides of my nose become more apparent. It’s hard to get a decent picture of this. I need to find out what my options are. It is my understanding that fillers are only temporary so I’m not sure how they go about building back when too much has been taken off. Now that more swelling is leaving the mid area, you can see the asymmetry which explains why the dent is deeper on the right side than on the left. This is so frustrating as I had no idea he would be narrowing my nose. He mentioned shaving a little off the sides of a small section of my dorsal where it was once slightly wider but he really carved a good portion of those areas. I am still unable to breathe properly from both sides of my nose but mainly my right. I had a consultation with another PS (facial) and was told I have to wait a year before he can help me. He was very kind and showed true empathy. He (and another doctor) said that I have collapsed valves and noted the dents where too much was taken off. He prescribed some nose spray to reduce inflammation but it doesn’t seem to help much.

It’s been 14 months since my primary and I wish...

It’s been 14 months since my primary and I wish I knew then what I know now. So many other things I would much rather be doing than searching for a surgeon to perform my revision. It scares me when I read reviews from people who haven’t done enough research and trust the first surgeon they consult with as I know that they could also be making the biggest mistake of their life.

Even worse than hating my new face, is what it’s done to me emotionally. I feel violated and victimized by the unethical plastic surgery office that sold me these surgeries. Makes you lose faith in your fellow man and yourself for falling for their marketing schemes and lies. Being depressed has not only hurt me but my loved ones and I hate that I allowed this to happen to my family because I was too trusting and didn’t spend enough time going on more consults and researching.

I realize that I can never get my original look back but hoping to find an honest and very skilled surgeon who can at least restore breathing. Restoring some of my old confidence back is a dream. I am afraid to hope for more as I don’t want to be let down again.

18 months post - My Biggest Regret - Bay Area, CA

Everything that I used to like about my face is now gone. My smile, those unique looks and expressions are completely different and unattractive. I mourn all day for my former face. All I wanted was a refined tip…a small change. Dr. C assured me the changes would be subtle and no one would notice. I trusted him and believed the technique/skill of the before/after photos on his website to be his work only to find out later that I was lied to.

I discovered during a recent (revision) consultation that Dr. C had broken my nose during my primary surgery. We NEVER discussed this! Breaking my nose is not “shaving a little off”! No wonder there was so much swelling and bruising. Why would he break my nose when that area of my nose was never discussed? I never disliked or complained to him about any part of my nose, other than my tip.

I feel like my life is on hold and fear that the rest of my life will be like this. I avoid people so they don’t notice the undesirable changes to my face. The more time that passes, the more visible the asymmetry and bumps become. My breathing was destroyed during surgery and has not improved at all.

Since posting my review, the rhinoplasty section of Dr. C’s website has been edited. They removed the rhinoplasty patient numbers and the comment which credited the actual surgeon who performed patient #1’s rhinoplasty. I have saved the images of their original website and all emails in case anyone ever wants proof of anything I’ve written.

Still pining for the former me -- hate this plastic surgery unnatural look

Nearly two years have passed and I am still very depressed and unhappy with these horrid results. I hadn’t used a mirror to look at my profile or other angles in months because it is too depressing but I finally decided to take another look in hopes that there was some improvement or perhaps I was hoping for a miracle but once again, my heart sank as I have to face the fact that these results are permanent and that I will never be that girl again.

I look at my old photos and would do anything to look like that again…it hurts to look at both my before or after photos. Plastic surgery ruined my neck, my face, my smile, and my life. I now have to live with a very unnatural plastic surgery appearance. I had been aging very gracefully and wish so badly that I would have never stepped foot in that PS office who reeled me in with their rehearsed sales gimmicks.

The cost of a revision is very high starting at 15k+. I still have not been able to save that kind of money and not sure when I will. I have a family and other financial obligations and it’s disheartening to know that I will use money that is much needed for other important things.
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon

There is too much to be said in this area. Feel free to contact me and I can explain the one-star rating for each rating.

1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
1 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
1 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
1 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
1 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
1 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
1 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
1 out of 5 stars Payment process
1 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (103)

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You should sue that doctor/their practice. You are entitled to a pretty big settlement after what they did. It could more than pay for your revision.
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you're right
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I'm so sorry to read this :( that is a terrible thing what that surgeon and his staff did
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Thank you very much Justine.
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can you share photos in private at least for us to get an idea and view what you are reporting?
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The mourning you feel of your before surgery face, I can relate so much. It's hard to see old pictures of myself. My complete look is different after my botched rhinoplasty from my smile, to my lips and eyes. So sorry this happened to you. It's an awful life changing experiance
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Thank you Heather. It is awful...and I hope that you're able to get help as soon as possible and move on from this living nightmare.
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I'm very sorry to hear about your story and it is also sad that people like you and i have to go through this. I had my surgery on Dec 20th 2013 and although i am a little pass my two month period i am NOT satisfied with my results. I did the same thing as you did and went with the first surgeon i consulted with but I felt confident that he would achieve the result that we discussed. I told him i wanted something very natural and that i didn't want a small nose but like almost every surgeon says, " if i shave down your bump i would also have to resize your nostrils and tip." and since I'm new at this you agree because you also don't think a lot is going to be done because you stress that you want something NATURAL well, i ended up with a small nose and i absolutely hate it. A lot went wrong, the size of the nose, the symmetry and the graft that was placed. Although some people don't even notice or don't think its that bad, I AM THE ONE THAT ISNT COMFORTABLE WITH THIS NOSE. I am now considering a revision because i want to have the nose i originally wanted and although i can't have my birth nose back i want something close to it. I also live in the bay area and i am thinking of consulting with Dr. Kim and Dr. Gruber i heard they are the best in the bay. Do you know of any other surgeons? who are you consulting with? also i know what you mean about the money but honestly your happiness is worth more than what money can bring you. Your loved ones will understand and support you, also money comes and goes so i say go for it =). I'm 23 yrs old and a full time student i am blessed with parents who understand what I'm going through and although we aren't rich they rather not eat for weeks than see me sad and depressed. I can't thank them enough and one day ill pay them back.
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I'll send you a pm mango about other surgeons. In the mean time, try not to be depressed and remember that it can actually take 2-3 years for final results so hang in there because you're not quite 3 months yet. Sometimes you just know right away but I've seen people who love theirs results in the beginning discover problems as the swelling subsides and visa versa. I'm sorry that you're not happy and I know how difficult and heartbreaking this is. As far as money goes, the buck stops with me. I don't have anyone in my life to help with my finances and I still support one child and my mother so it is imperative that I am not reckless with my finances.
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:-( sorry to read about your horrible surgery, that totally sucks! Why does it cost so much for a revision?
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Hi and thank you. I am not sure but I've gotten two quotes which were about the same. I guess because we must harvest the material from other parts of my body, the time the surgery will take, and possibly because both surgeons I consulted with are in the Bay Area and perhaps the overhead is higher? Not sure. I hope to consult with other surgeons out of the area as well but then I will also have to incur travel and hotel fees. I am getting so tired of waiting that sometimes I wonder if I should just do the functional part now (to restore my breathing) and then someday fix the remaining issues. I really don't want to go through 2 more surgeries so I doubt I would do that but boy do I miss being able to breathe.
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You are such a vile person. She was obviously deceived.
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First of all, a drastic change of the nose does change your entire face when you smile. And secondly, I had my photos up for months but eventually took them down and will put them back up after I get a revision. You're the one that sounds like you need therapy with your hatred and anger issues. So easy to say cruel things behind a computer while anonymous. The only thing you're right about is post traumatic stress, which happens to everyone who has had botched plastic surgeries. I'm just wondering why so much hatred...who are you really and why do you feel the need attack me? Sounds personal.
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This is all very odd for someone who supposedly just signed up...and claims to be from Australia. I wonder who you really are and why you feel compelled to defend Dr. Cheng. I wonder if RS checked your IP, if it would turn out to be from CA. Dr. Cheng and his assistant lied about his experience and before/after photos and I have proof. Because he didn’t have the experience he claimed to have, he wasn’t able to deliver the results I expected or was promised. Why are you even taking an interested in my review? Strange.
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btw, here are some photos http://www.realself.com/review/danville-bay-area-chin-liposuction-neck-lipo-sculpture-lipo-suction and http://www.realself.com/question/rhinoplasty-revision-advice-fillers-recommendations-appreciated
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You're really, really sick
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Faith2012, I'm afraid you have a stalker on your hands. Why so personally invested? Scary! You should totally get the IP address looked up. I'm sure if it was possible, they'd have the cut up letters from a magazine as their font like a ransomer. I truly feel for you, and am so sorry for a fellow human being (yes I am apologizing on behalf of this creep) showing you such ignorance. I hope that I and the many other wonderful people on here negate the small demographic of hateful people.
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Yes De, I agree...it's obvisiously personal to this stalker. Dishonest people love the anonymity the Internet provides. I had the misfortune of falling prey to a very dishonest office and they are mad that I'm still here, warning people. And yes, I have found much support from you and the other wonderful people here on RS. Thank you!
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I just read your story and I'm so sorry you didn't like the outcome. It makes me really nervous to go through with the surgery. Do you have before and after pics that you can send me?
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I'll can send you a p.m. later. There is a huge difference between Dr. Shah and my surgeon. I didn't do enough homework and had no idea my surgeon planned on breaking my nose and making drastic changes. My surgeon had no rhinoplasty reviews, even though I was lead to believe he had performed many. Dr. Shah has many good reviews. Just make sure you're on the same page as him, and you may want to go on more consults for piece of mind. Many recommend going on 4 or 5 consults with very experienced rhinoplasty surgeons. As a rule of thumb, I don't recommend General Plastic surgeons, although there are a few exceptions. Rhinoplasty is probably the most difficult plastic surgery, so you really want to go with someone with lots of experience and (genuine) good reviews. Be wary of fake reviews and dishonest surgeons and their employees.
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