Breast Reduction Gone Wrong - Charlotte, NC

My breast reduction put me in the hospital with...

My breast reduction put me in the hospital with leeches, due to him being on vacation, and his nurse not having another doctor look at me till his return. Which caused me to lose feeling in my breast, no nipples, and a hanging fat under my arms, which cost me an additional 1,000+. He may be a good doctor, but it doesn't hurt to get another opinion before your surgery. A lot of good reviews, but no bad nor procedure gone wrong pictures. I am still paying for this procedure every time I look in the mirror at myself. Get a second opinion.
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon

Limited

1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
3 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
3 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
1 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
2 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
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
1 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (8)

Any time there is an unexpected complication, no matter how rare, there is emotional trauma. I never would wish for a complication for my family or for any of my patients. When there is an unexpected event after surgery, any surgery, what is most important is to get the care you need. I remember this situation and the frustration of having to put this woman in the hospital. Losing a nipple is very uncommon, but can occur with any breast reduction procedure, particularly with women who smoke or are at higher weight. Medicinal leech treatment is used as a last resort to save the nipple. The stress and frustration of any complication extends beyond the patient to the family, the hospital nurses and the doctor. As a matter of information: Any time I am out of town, there is always another covering plastic surgeon and my staff is only a phone call away. Any person for whom I have performed surgery is always welcome to come to my office, for follow-up care. For RealSelf followers: I cannot explain why a past patient decides to post a comment 8 years after a procedure and suggest that the care she received was inferior. It gives others the impression that the doctor was cavalier and uncaring or unprofessional. Perhaps a better approach is for this patient to call me, as I would be glad to help her in any way I can, even 8 years later.
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sandykats, Thank you for your comment. I am sorry this happened to you. I was following this doctor, after his comments on Fat Transfer. Amazing that there was no back up doctor available.
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Please know that there is always a back-up or "covering doctor" any time I am not immediately available. This has been my practice for the last 18 years. To make sure that there is someone who can immediately respond to a patient need, when I am away or out of town, my nurse is the "first responder", but there is always a doctor available.
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Dr. Ditesheim, Thank you for setting the record straight about the back up doctor. My doctor had his plastic surgeon brother backing him up, when I realized that he had removed fat from my butt. Using the word upset to describe my reaction is probably an understatement. Looking back, I think my doctor may have hated me for exposing this to his staff, and brother. By the way, his staff was wonderful. He just skipped over the questions about the pain in an email. He answered all of my other questions, and denied allowing his newbie doctor to work on me. Prior to the email last December, I had planned to return so he could put the fat back. Well, I was not totally unconscious during the procedure. I was able to hear him talking to this young female doctor. He told her" There is a divot. Don't go any further." This so called divot is below my tale bone. Fat was removed above and to the side of my tailbone. She did some of the fat transfer, too. He told her " Don't go in there, her orbital bone is high." Once the trust is broken, it is very difficult for women to communicate with their doctor. I tried to be optimistic, even after the fat was removed from my butt. I wanted to believe this was all going to turn out well in the end. In my mind, Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde best describes the doctor in the consult vs the doctor that worked on me. What good would it do to call him out? Thanks again for setting the record straight about a back up doctor.
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Thanks for your reply. I do agree with you. When there is a decision for surgery, there is an implied trust. Despite TV "real life" shows, when I am in the operating room the tone and decorum are professional. While I am not a pilot, I think of it similar to flying a jet and being responsible for the lives of the passengers. There is no room for anything but the highest standards in staff, preparation and expertise. The trust is not given it is earned. If there is going to be another surgeon or teaching or anything that could be different from what the patient understands to be happening, this must be discussed ahead and be acceptable to the patient. This was the topic of a lead article in the New York Times, front page this past Sunday. Thanks again
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Thank you for your professional comments. There are many cosmetic device salespeople selling their latest gadgets to cosmetic surgeons. Faces are injured, and lives are ruined by the hunt for more money. I understand how expensive it is for a plastic surgeon to practice in today's world. A small but growing number of surgeons have chosen a different path, however. They choose to wait and see the long term results of these quick miracles fixes. Nobody knows or can prove that Ultherapy will eventually cause fat atrophy, even if it does not show up during the first year or two on a younger patient. Mothers faces are being damaged everyday by lasers. You can't imagine what it is like to have your kids stare at you in disbelief. Fortunately, I have a supportive husband that loves me. Money invested in this high dollar equipment has to be recouped by the surgeon. Patients should be warned about every possible side effect. Instead, there is a sales presentation. I have learned the hard way. My fat transfer did not work. This would be okay, if I had not suffered more severe damage. Where I really needed the fat replaced, was just left out anyway. Trusting the liposuction techniques, and fat injections being administered by a high-dollar surgeon- that I was referred to by another plastic surgeon- was automatic. None of this is your fault. You are not responsible for other doctor's actions. You appear to be a sincere, professional surgeon. There is nothing more powerful than a personal recommendation from a satisfied patient. You don't even have to have a website, if you have happy customers. Ladies will travel the globe for the right plastic surgeon. Again. thank you for your comments.
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How great of you to write this. I wish all women could read this, it is one of the best comments and advice I have ever seen on Real Self. Only experience can permit full disclosure, as it takes time to see the results, the complications and the unexpected. It also takes a commitment to follow patients over time to really test predictability. You are right, there are people out there who are "selling" before all the information is in. There are also people who really don't care. But knowning the difference, we would all want a surgeon who is honest, transparent, caring and focused on getting what I tell my patients: safety and predictability.
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Thank you for sharing your review with the community.  I am sorry for your struggles.
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