Former patients of botched cosmetic surgery procedures face difficult challenges in fundraising for their own repair surgeries.
Others face similar hurdles in defending themselves against lawsuits filed by providers.
Defamation Defendants: £5,000 Sought, £120 Pledged in 5 days.
In England, the Free Speech Union has created a fundraiser to help what it calls the “Signature Four,” a group of four former patients separately sued by Signature Clinic after they posted what the clinic deemed were defamatory reviews.
The fundraiser seeks £5,000, or about $6,378.00 USD.
Whether the patients’ legal defense teams will see any of these donations is contingent upon reaching the full £5,000 goal within the next 25 days.
Thus far, £120 has been pledged by five donors.
Signature Clinic is suing at least two defendants for £10,000, but four cases in all are being tried together, according to the Union.
In its fundraiser, the Free Speech Union notes the defendants it is assisting have secured “excellent representation” from a leading firm that is “doing everything they can to keep costs down while ensuring the Four get the representation they deserve,” and that the Union itself is further doing all it can to “drive down costs.”
“But this kind of litigation is expensive,” the Union says.
If the Union’s fundraising effort fails to reach its goal of £5,000 within the next 25 days, by 3:00 pm on February 4, 2024, donor’s credit cards will not be charged, the platform says, and no donations will be received.
If it does reach its goal, funds raised will be forwarded to legal counsel automatically, less platform fees.
Botched Surgery Repair: $150,000 Sought, $600 Donated in 51 days.
Kimberly McCormick, 65, says she visited the Mexico Bariatric Center for cosmetic surgery after weight loss, but ended up botched, sexually assaulted, and with breast implants and a Brazilian butt lift she never asked for.
McCormick’s daughter further alleged that she and her mother were forced out with machine guns, and that she was kicked down a flight of marble stairs.
The Bariatric Center denied these claims to the Times, stating machine guns were never involved, and that McCormick’s written consent was provided for all procedures performed on her.
On grounds of patient privacy, however, the Bariatric Center declined sharing any substantiating evidence, including exterior photographs that would show whether or not armed guards were present when McCormick and her daughter took an Uber to depart the facility.
Following the ordeal, MistyAnn McCormick organized a fundraiser seeking $150,000 for “Emergency Reconstruction of a Botched Surgery.”
McCormick’s fundraiser highlights the alleged physical and mental abuse the two endured while on a trip to Mexico for cosmetic surgery:
“My mother requires massive surgery to fix the disfiguring of her Body, Mind and Soul. My mother is 65 and should not look like this. she had dedicated her life serving people less fortunate then herself. She heads up several things at her church to serve children whose parents are in prison; she helps them go to VBC, gets school supplies and Receive Christmas meals and gifts.“
Kimberly says they have found a doctor willing to treat her mother, removing her unwanted breast implants, and reversing her unwanted Brazilian butt lift surgery, as well as a therapist to treat them both.
“[A]s we were both held hostage from October 29th, 2023 until November 2nd 2023. I was beaten with a machine gun, kicked and pushed down 3 stories of marble stairs. however I would not leave my mother there. there told me if we did not pay them they would put us in Mexican Prison and we would die.
“Please help my mother and I get the treatment and therapy we need. after being held hostage and surgically mutilated, and sexually assaulted,” she begs.
Created one month and 22 days ago, McCormick’s $150,000 fundraiser has since generated $600, from 13 donors, despite national and international media attention.
Defamation Defense: $55,000 Sought, $780 Donated in 5 days.
Korean-American comedian Tina Kim is being sued by WAVE Plastic Surgery over a TikTok video she shared covering the poor customer service she says she experienced after an unscheduled walk-in to the KoreanTown clinic.
WAVE’s lawsuit seeks an unspecified sum “in an amount not less than $250,000,” according to court filings obtained by the Times.
Kim is not a former patient but a content creator and comedian with 87,700 followers on TikTok.
She chose to leave the allegedly inaccurate review up and created a legal defense-fund fundraiser on January 3, 2024, announcing her needs in a video that has since been viewed 23,200 times.
Kim says she is “all alone and poor,” and likens the lawsuit to “suing a homeless person for their home.”
Seeking $55,000 to defend herself against the clinic’s defamation lawsuit, 25 donors have given $780.00 in five days.
Botched Surgery Repair: £17,300 Sought, $0.00 Donated in 57 days.
Allan Allitt says a botched blepharoplasty surgery in Turkey has ruined his life.
Hoping to finance repair surgery, he launched a GoFundMe on November 13, 2023, seeking £17,300 or $21,974 in donations.
In 57 days, no contributions have been made.
Allitt, who lives in England, found a Turkish hair transplant company online and booked a procedure over WhatsApp.
When the clinic said they could freshen up his eyes at the same time, he says he agreed to undergo blepharoplasty surgery.
“So Turkey it was, I was assured that the surgeon was of the highest standard and Istanbul was the plastic surgery capital of the world and then he just damaged me by removing so much skin from my eyes, instead of removing around 1 mm to just take up a wrinkle he took 1.5 cm of skin all the way up to my eye brow’s and pulled my eyebrows down into my eye sockets where my eyebrows now sit on top of my eyeball, the lower eye lid had so much skin taken away the shape of the eye changed and now it sits below the iris and shows white under the eyeball instead of it sitting at the colour change on the Iris, this has made my eye dry out, and painful….”Allan Allitt, botched cosmetic surgery patient, GoFundMe, November 13, 2023.
Now, he can no longer fully close his eyes. “My eyelids came off my eyeballs,” he writes.
Allitt cautions others that, despite popular belief and prior media coverage, the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) declined treating his complications.
“Don’t believe what you see on the TV when you think you might get some help from the NHS, they don’t want to know,” he says.
These cases highlight the costly and unanticipated difficulties involved in botched cosmetic surgery.
Elective cosmetic surgery patients typically finance the costs of their primary procedures.
Repair surgeries and legal defense expenditures are separate and often even more costly.