Patients lose huge sums of money and develop disfigurements and disabilities during botched cosmetic procedures. 

When her nose became deformed after a facial cosmetic surgery, Ms T., a 28-year-old woman from Hanoi, experienced depression and loss of sleep and appetite. She was further shocked to learn that someone she knew had recommended this facility in order to earn a referral fee. 

The person who performed the nose enhancement procedure turned out to be… a hairstylist

Ms T. explained that she chose a “doctor” for her rhinoplasty based on a recommendation from an acquaintance. However, she later discovered that the referral was made only to receive a commission.

The surgical procedure took place in an apartment located in a residential building in Hanoi. The nose augmentation process lasted approximately 90 minutes, and she did not receive a pre-operative examination.

Undergoing a rhinoplasty surgery at an unreliable beauty facility often results in dangerous complications

“During the period after the procedure when I was seeking corrective treatment, I experienced terrible pain caused by nasal inflammation and extreme stress that affected my appetite and sleep. I felt mentally strained, constantly blaming and torturing myself for making the wrong choice,” shares Ms T.

After experiencing complications, Ms T. learned that the person who performed her surgery was previously a hairdresser who later trained in rhinoplasty procedures, rather than a professionally trained and certified doctor. Ms T. also never saw any evidence of this person’s medical license, qualifications, or permits for performing nose lift procedures at that facility.

Ms T. had five nose surgeries. The more Ms T. tried to fix her nose, the worse it became.

Ms T. (36 years old, from Long An province) states that after many years of dreaming to enhance her appearance with a more refined nose, she visited a cosmetic clinic in District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, in April 2020, based on its extensive online advertisements. However, this marked the beginning of a tragic journey, resulting in high financial losses and four years of physical pain and mental anguish.

Cartilage had to be removed from Ms T.’s nose after it became damaged during a botched surgery.

At this facility, Ms T. chose to have her nose lifted using rib cartilage, which cost VND 60 million. Ms T. believed that, because this was the most expensive option, it was therefore the best. However, after the surgery, her nose developed fluid build-up and had to be drained for a month. Once the fluid subsided, her nose no longer maintained a straight shape. A year later, she returned to the same facility to have her nose revised as part of the centre’s warranty policy.

During the second attempt, the aesthetic clinic used ear cartilage and artificial cartilage to fix Ms T.’s nose. But again, a few days later, she experienced fluid and blood leakage. During the process of draining the fluid and suturing the wound, the aesthetics clinic staff caused further deformity and skin tearing.

Losing trust in this facility, Ms T. requested a refund. The centre agreed to refund half of the costs but insisted that they were no longer responsible for the incident.

In September 2021, with her nose in an even worse condition after the second operation, Ms T. heard about another med spa through recommendations from friends. This time, her old cartilage was removed, and new materials were implanted. However, after the surgery, one side of the nasal wing sank.

By the end of 2022, Ms T. went to another spa to have her nose repaired after an attractive invitation from a consultant. Her nose bled severely when the stitches from that procedure were removed. After a week, the wound became increasingly open. Ms T. went back to the spa to request a revision, but her nose was stitched and unstitched multiple times, worsening its condition. Finally, the doctor at this spa applied filler and additional sutures to the collapsed nasal wing. A few days later, the injection site developed pus, and the spa removed the cartilage and replaced it with connective tissue.

After two months of cartilage removal, with the wound still unhealed, Ms T. sought treatment at a hospital in Ho Chi Minh City in June 2023.

Feeling stressed and anxious while searching for a place to fix her mutilated nose.

Ms P.T.H (27 years old, from Thanh Hoa province) shared that her journey to fix her nose has been extremely difficult, costly, and painful. In her first attempt, she underwent rhinoplasty at a cosmetic clinic but ended up with collapsed cartilage. Subsequently, she decided to have a revision surgery instead of opting for cartilage removal.

“In the second attempt, I asked the cosmetic clinic if they were confident in performing the procedure, and they assured me they were. However, after the revision, my nose looked even worse. Despite receiving injections and taking antibiotics for a whole month, my nose remained crooked, collapsed, and discoloured,” says Ms H.

Correcting cosmetic surgeries gone wrong is more challenging than performing the initial cosmetic procedure

Le Hanh, MD, PhD, Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City Plastic Surgery Association, states that revising a previous surgery is always more difficult than the initial procedure. Surgeons have to repair scar tissue, deformities, and damage in the surgical area. For example, correcting complications with the nose can be extremely challenging and may require multiple revisions, resulting in significant expenses and downtime on behalf of the patient. One of the most severe complications is fibrous contracture, which causes the nose to shrink and deform.

Dr Nguyen Thanh Vinh, Specialist Level II, FV Lifestyle Clinic, FV Hospital, explains that beauty is one of the essential standards in modern society, and increasing demand for aesthetic enhancements among both women and men is natural and justified. With advancements in medical and aesthetic technologies, individuals have the ability to intervene to enhance their beauty, quality of life, and self-confidence. However, in reality, many people endure terrible experiences due to not being diligent enough in choosing a reputable cosmetic surgery facility.

“Your face and body are valuable assets, and when deciding to enhance your beauty, it is crucial for individuals to thoroughly research and choose a facility that ensures quality in terms of infrastructure, medical professionals, and technology to undergo safe aesthetic procedures,” advises Dr Nguyen Thanh Vinh.

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