No AfterCare, No Results, Mexico for Surgery is Risky. Mexico, MO

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July 16, 2014 I went to Mexico for a face & neck...

July 16, 2014 I went to Mexico for a face & neck lift and upper eyelid blepharoplasty. When I returned to the U.S. the doctor did not take responsibility for my follow-up care, even when there were problems. For this reason, I would not recommend anyone go to Mexico for plastic surgery. What if there are problems & you are not close by and is there consumer protection in Mexico when a doctor a does not take responsibility for care?

There were problems & the doctor did not take responsibility for my follow-up care. Also, it has now been 6 months since surgery and I still see no improvement in my mid or lower face and only minimal improvement in my neck. In fact, the left side of my face looks worse.

Also Dr. Suarez did not perform one of the surgeries we had agreed he would do and I paid for - the upper eyelid blepharoplasty. They asked me to pay an additional fee for eyelid surgery when I got there because I had cancelled the breast implant due to recent complications with a shoulder injury. After surgery he said he “removed fat” from the eyelids.but not skin. This is not what I asked for or paid for and he gave no medical reason why he did not do the upper eyelid blepharoplasty. I had that surgery 17 years ago successfully and wanted it repeated. I am concerned that now I cannot have eyelid surgery done for awhile to get the results I asked for because it is a delicate area and perhaps iI should not have eyelid surgery there soon. So i may have lost my chance to improve my eyelids.

Here is what happened with the complications from the face & neck lift: after surgery Dr. Suarez saw me but did not do a hands on physical exam in the poorly lit room. The examining nurse said “it looks like she has a small hemotoma” (on left side of my face/neck ) but he ignored that comment. When I returned home, I followed the doctor’s aftercare instructions completely. A week after surgery, the swelling on my left cheek and jowl area increased, there were hard lumps there, and redness behind my left ear, Also the dark bruising on that side wasn’t fading at all - these conditions lasted for a month even though the right side progressed fine. Three weeks after surgery, I noticed the suture lines were breaking open in front of the ears and something was poking out which I thought was the suture materials.

I reported this immediately to his office and sent photos. One of his assistants, who I doubt is medically trained, got back to me but not the doctor. Five weeks after the surgery, I insisted on talking to the doctor and all he said was “everything looks great in your pictures” and “it can take a year for the results.” Finally I also asked for a written brief notes about the surgery so I could I consult with a local plastic surgeon for a hands on exam, especially of the suture lines which I were concerned could get infected. I had to insist upon it but Dr. Suarez did email the brief surgery notes. I felt I needed a hands on exam by a plastic surgeon even though it would be an additional expense and doctors in the U.S. are not enthused about following up on someone else’s surgery.

After the consult with the local plastic surgeon, who confirmed that I had problems probably caused by either a hematoma or a seroma, I sent Dr. Suarez the report about this which he had requested - but got no response from him. Although I was very concerned I politely only reported the facts of what the other doctor told me. But I got no response from Dr. Suarez and I never got any messages that his office had contacted me. Two months later (almost at the 4month point), I emailed to again ask for a response and I still got no response. I have no idea why but it was stressful. Any doctor is trained about their responsibilities with followup and it is part of what I paid for so I feel this doctor was negligent.

The local plastic surgeon that I consulted with in August confirmed that I probably had a sentoma or hemotoma on my left cheek resulting in swelling and skin discoloration or staining on that side that could be permanent. Also there were multiple sutures extruding, which caused the suture lines to open - this was a risk for infection. The local doctor removed most of the extruding sutures. Later there were more which I removed myself, including one in the eyelid. Dr. Suarez had never mentioned I might need to do this much after care for myself. The sutures were supposed to be “absorbable” within “45 days.” Since the scars had broken open, I was concerned about infection and the effect this would have on the quality of the scar. The complications made aftercare difficult since I could not focus on scar healing entirely, like with using sun block, but still had open wounds in some places, which meant I couldn’t apply anything there or get my hair dyed. I was also concerned about the prolonged swelling on the left cheek and jowl and the possibility that would stretch the skin. I couldn’t feel comfortable in public for many weeks.

As I said, I followed all Dr. Suarez’s after pre and after care instructions including a head bandage wrapped around the head 24 hrs. daily for a 4 wks - no other doctor requires it. It doesn’t make sense to me because it doesn’t even effect the neck. It is also hot in the summer and wrapping your head several times a day involves too much aftercare for the patient and makes it difficult to see problems occurring. Plus it extends the amount of time you can’t be public. It didn’t make sense to me but I did it.

I only needed minimal improvement in my jowls and neck but I didn’t even get that. It has now been 6 months since surgery and I see no improvement in my mid or lower face and only minimal improvement in my neck. In fact, the left side of my face looks worse. My profile no longer looks good because now I have a jowl and double chin look on left side. I also only needed right eyelid improvement and there is no improvement. The left eyelid looks worse! I had the upper eyelid blepharoplasty 17 years ago successfully but now I understand I shouldn’t get eyelid surgery again because the skin is thin there. So now I have to live with eyelids worse than when I saw Dr. Surarez even though I paid him to do the blepharoplasty.

I would NOT recommend anyone go to Mexico for surgery. If you need followup care and your doctor does not take responsibility for that you are in a very difficult and stressful position. It was a very stressful experience for me and a waste of money and time. I feel I did not get what I paid for and the experience was very disappointing. I will be 60 soon and don’t take the risk of having plastic surgery and general anesthesia again lightly so I feel I lost the opportunity to improve my appearance.

Wasted Time & Money, Major Stress, No Aftercare

It has been almost one year now since my “face and neck lift” plus “eyelid lift” with this doctor. I did not get either from this doctor but did get my time and money wasted and major stress and my health threatened. My main concern was my neck which looks the same as it did after surgery, and my face looks worse. I had a great profile before and now it looks puffy under my chin. My left eyelid looks worse. This doctor provided no aftercare even when something went wrong. The sutures were suppose to dissolve on their own but they didn’t and the area got inflamed. The Mexican Board of Plastic Surgeons doesn’t pay attention to complaints.

Mexico Plastic Surgeon

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 Payment process
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