She Ruined Sunny Days for Me Forever . . . -Lincolnshire, IL

I had the worst possible experience with the...

I had the worst possible experience with the Fraxel laser. On the day of the procdure, after waiting almost 2 hours for Dr. Taub, with the anthestic cream wearing off, the procedure was much more painful than they described. I had a number of complications that were not directly addressed well by her office in the days that followed. Three months later I developed hyperpigmentation on my cheeks - which is like a permanent tatoo on my face that darkens when exposed to sunlight. The hyperpigmenation was only in the area that Dr. Taub treated - we saw that because there was a line of pigmentation on my jaw where she did the procedure. Dr. Taub said it happens in 1% of Fraxels, and of course, she was sorry that it happened to me. I actually did the research before this procedure, and was found that this 1% hyperpigmentation complication is actually less in the "hands of a competent doctor." So, I figured Dr. Taub is very good, so I should have less of a chance of complications with her. BOY WAS I WRONG!
After month of creams doing very little, and Dr. Taub having nothing to effectively address the problem, I went to 3 other dermatologists. One of them trained Dr. Taub in medical school. I wish I had gone to him first before using Dr. Taub! He confirmed that there are fewer complications with Fraxel when the doctor is competent. He also confirmed that there is very little to do to fix the horrible effects of the procedure. Dr. Taub never called to follow up with me when I stopped coming. She knew exactly of my problems and what she was doing to address them, and never followed through to see how I was.
Where it has left me: in the 3 years since I have had the Fraxel, I need to avoid the sun, or the hyperpigmentation gets worse. So, in addition to sunscreen every 2 hours, I have become afraid of beautiful sunny days. Before this procedure, I played tennis, skiied, swam and did all sorts of outdoor activities. Now, I need to wear full brimmed hats outdoors, and it seriously curtails my ability to enjoy the outdoors as I used to do. When on vacation in sunny destinations, I am covered up and get nervous when my face gets touched by the sun. So, the part of my face that wasn't affected by the Fraxel is white and the cheeks, where Dr. Taub turned up the laser, get dark with the slightest bit of sun through high SPFs of broad spectrum sunscreen. The skin on my face is mottled thanks to her, and I am afraid to be in the sun, which has made life way less pleasurable for me.
Her office follow through and the store Skinfo were also a disaster. The automatron she has working at Skinfo told me that "You assumed the risk" when I told her what happened. She had no empathy, no compassion for a patient that had suffered complications. It was if the entire office went into legal training speak when I was trying to get my problem dealt with. I never was mad or raised my voice with anyone, and I had such reason to do so!
I think they run a factory and try to see as many patients as possible to pay for the expensive machinery they have purchased. They have overstretched Dr. Taub to make money on the practice, and she is borderline negligent because they have stretched her too thin.
I was asked to add a comment to this thread that I started 6 months ago. For the record, Dr. Taub saw this post, and called me directly. She gave me her cell and asked me to call her back. She spoke to me, and asked me to come in to her office. I came to her new office in Glencoe, which is right down the block from where I live. I saw her and her nurse, Lori, who I felt I had a rapport with when I was a regular patient at her office. She said that she was sorry this happened, which of course, I knew. She said she doesn't use the procedure that she used on me anymore because of what happened to me and another patient. Great. She told me she was willing to do whatever Dr. Garden's office was doing for me for no cost, since I was going for treatment to Dr. Garden for almost $400 per time every few months. She wanted to know what protocol his office was using since no one knows how to treat this problem she created, the hyperpigmentation. I suggested she call him, which she did. Even for no cost down the street from my house, I basically do not trust her to do the right thing with my skin, even with the right intensions. So, I am continuing to pay at the Dr. Garden's office downtown. I am trying to think what I would have liked from her because I have struggled and am continuing to struggle SO much with the after effects of her treatment. I still cannot enjoy a sunny day - it is sad. I just need to take cover or else I get a beard-like after effect from the sun. My face is SO pale in the places that haven't been touched by the sun in 3 years. Dr. Taub offered me any sunscreen, cosmetics in her store or a hat from her store for no cost. Dr Taub's belief is that she provided the best treatment "at the time" for me - using the then current knowledge of how to treat melasma. SO, with this as her position, she doesn't need to feel guilt or remorse for what she did, or feel she made a bad judgement call with the amount of power she used or with the machinery she chose. She doesn't have to question her agency in the event: her motives, her actions, or any of her decisions. I guess she couldn't do what she does if she were to examine her role in what happens to her patients, since she believes she is trying her best to provide the best outcome. But I think this belief makes her reckless and stops her from checking the real possibilities of the downsides. Her literature on the Fraxel Dual that she has her patients sign said there was a 1% chance of hyperpigmentation. But, if the doctor turns it to the level she did or uses it the way she used it with me, there is a 100% chance of hyperpigmentation. This is just true - she said she is not using it anymore. Why didn't I sue her? Believe it or not, I am a lawyer. I worked in the litigation department of a large firm for years. I didn't want the hassle. I was hassled enough by dealing with it to put any more energy in it. Her document that I signed could have been easily dealt with - nothing protects a doctor against negligence.
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I have been going to Dr. Taub for various treatments for over 8 years now and have been extremely satisfied with her both care and concern in creating an effective treatment plan and execution. She has been very cautious with regards to the treatments she has recommended for dealing with my aging skin - hyperpigmentation/melasma, wrinkles, etc. She has advised me against doing certain treatments that I had read about and was interested in doing, telling me that it would cost a lot of money and be effective for only a short while, with the melasma returning. What she has recommended has worked well and I am very satisfied with the improvements that I believe have occurred. She has done some photorejuvenation on me this past year over several appointments, utilizing 3 different lasers in each sitting. I am not sure which ones were used, but they were very specific to the issues she was addressing - which was also some broken blood vessels and cappillaries, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation (not the melasma). After the first treatment I had a very bad reaction on my chest to the treatment. It was very painful and looked pretty scary. It was not what I had expected at all - and is not the typical reaction - but no one individual is the same and this is something we all must be conscious of going into any sort of treatment. Both she and her assistants called me several times in the next few days asking me to send them pictures of how it looked and how it was improving. She had her Skinstore overnight for me different medications and creams to deal with the problem. I was very impressed with their level of concern, follow up and care. In fact, I was even surprised, given how unusual it is in my mind for doctors to call you, without you having to call them, to check in. I feel very bad for the woman who experienced such horrible side effects and results from the fraxel treatment that she received. And I believe that with any type of treatment there are possible risks and side effects - which they make you acknowledge in signing all of the consent forms. It should make you think twice about whether any of it is worth it. Some times I question it as well and have changed my mind about doing it, especially the fraxel, as I know that this type of thing does happen. I am very susceptible to bruising and no matter how careful Dr. Taub is, it is not a perfect situation every single time. She is well aware of my fear of the bruising as I really do not want to do treatments with any down time due to work, and she does everything possible - icing beforehand, icing after, etc. - to eliminate the issue. But it still happens. Not every time - but some times. It is the nature of the beast and I think very unfair to blame her for incompetence when she is clearly extremely competent. I truly believe that Dr. Taub cares very much about the patient, the issues that you are there for and it is not about the money. She is very passionate about her work and it shows in the quality of her care and knowledge and expertise. I felt compelled to write something here to stand up for her care. I would give her 5 stars all the way around as a doctor. I obviously cannot say much about the fraxel because I have never been confident enough in what could happen - for good and bad. But I am 100% confident in Dr. Taub's care.
Reply
We are very sorry to hear that you are disappointed with your treatment in our office. Our policy has always been to take excellent care of all of our patients. It is very important to us to help you resolve the issues you are having with your skin at the present time. We can assure you that Dr. Taub is a highly experienced dermatologist and laser surgeon and is 100% committed to her patients. There are many treatment options that you may benefit from to improve the side effects you describe. Please email us directly at info@advdermatology.com or call us at 847-459-6400 so that we can make an appointment for you to come in and talk to Dr. Taub at your convenience. You can ask for the practice manager or one of the cosmetic coordinators to set up your appointment.
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Chicago Dermatologic Surgeon

Dr. Taub was my dermatologist for 12 years before I went to her for this procedure. I trusted her. I thought she was smart and well trained. She completely screwed up on me, and did not follow through with my care afterwards. She cares about expanding her practice and making lots of money. But, she does not care about her patients after they pay her fees.

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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