Case of a Cosmetic Surgeon Was Sentenced in Prison: Litigations of Cosmetic Medical Negligence and Also Centered on Doctors in Prison in Taiwan
Patient B received liposuction under propofol intravenous general anesthesia. Dyspnea occurred after he left the clinic. He was sent to a hospital but died in a few hours. Autopsy was performed and showed severe pulmonary edema without occlusion of the coronary arteries nor fat emboli found in the pulmonary arteries. Some fibrosis was found in the conduction system of the heart. Testimony of medical expert could not confirm the cause of the pulmonary edema. The doctor who performed the liposuction was sentenced to be guilty without probation. After literatures review, a very rare allergic reaction to propofol might be the etiology. Only 3 cases were reported in Taiwan. Is postoperative pulmonary edema foreseeable and avoidable? What is the standard of care in liposuction surgeries or cosmetic surgeries? The judgments of the litigations of malpractice of the 14 cosmetic surgeons were reviewed. Seven surgeons were sentenced to be guilty. There were 10 physicians sentenced in prison due to medical malpractice from 1981 to 2004 and another 3 physicians in recent 10 years. Comparison of the guilty physician in prison between Taiwan and Japan is also presented.