Turkey surgery patients 'left to rot' after dangerous operations as victims share stories

One client Kate's clinic saw post-surgery had seen her fat removed from her abdomen, which was then injected it into her face - allegedly without her permission -Credit:Supplied
One client Kate's clinic saw post-surgery had seen her fat removed from her abdomen, which was then injected it into her face - allegedly without her permission -Credit:Supplied

Patients who have undergone surgery in Turkey have come forward to discuss 'near-death' experiences they faced after being sent home without aftercare, operated on without consent, and had instruments left stuck in their bodies.

Many women choose to fly out to Turkey in order to have cosmetic procedures done as it's often cheaper over there. However, things can go wrong, and sometimes not enough is done to protect the patients.

Sepsis, exploding breasts, burst stomachs and blood clots are all amongst the horrific details that women have described after surgery, and returning home in these states is piling on even more pressure to the NHS.

The Mirror reports that patients can find it very difficult to request compensation when surgeries go wrong - and many are told that now they're back in the UK, it's the NHS's problem.

For hospitals in the UK, this is a very common issue. For example, one woman flew to Izmir for a neck lift in 2022, only to have an instrument left inside her body. Whilst there, she says she was talked into having a tummy tuck, which left her stomach 'bursting open'.

Allegedly without her consent, they took fat from her abdomen and injected it into her face resulting in septic infections. She was forced to have emergency surgery on the NHS and couldn't leave the house for eight months.

The woman claims she was met with threatening phone calls and messages from the hospital staff after she posted about her experience on Facebook. "They've said they will sue me, take money off me, get their lawyers onto me. They've been clear they will come after me if I name them," she said.

After contacting a Turkish solicitor, she was able to find out that you only get compensation if you 'lose a limb or something' which is why surgery is so cheap.

Just some of the messages she received
Just some of the messages she received -Credit:Supplied

She sought wound treatment from nurse Kate Monteith-Ross who is the lead aesthetic nurse of The Clinic by La Ross. Kate sees around 17 people a week who have underwent botched surgery, the majority of whom had it in Turkey.

Kate said: "Patients are coming to us with signs of sepsis - vomiting, fever, with infections left untreated. We've got to do something because what we're seeing here at the moment is beyond anything that I ever imagined I'd ever see."

An instrument stuck in her neck following surgery
An instrument stuck in her neck following surgery -Credit:Supplied

One botched surgery victim is Sara Platt, from South Wales. She needed nine NHS surgeries after a tummy tuck, breast uplift and arm lift she was talked into at the last minute went wrong.

The 33-year-old says her stomach 'exploded', leaving her scarred mentally and physically. She now suffers from complex PTSD and is suing her surgeon for medical negligence.

"They left me rotting in a hotel for 28 days,” the mum said. "'It's normal' is their favourite buzzword over there. My body was left black and blue, it's a jigsaw."

Another woman who visited Kate's clinic for care had underwent a BBL, a leg lift, a breast uplift and implants all in one session in Turkey before having an arm lift and abdominoplasty three days later.

She showed up with two dead breasts with necrotic tissue, infected wounds in her legs, arms and abdomen, and her belly button oozed discharge as well as having a blood clot.

"She was so unwell. We dressed her the best we could and wrote a referral letter, and told her husband to take her straight to A&E where she's been ever since. This is the kind of rubbish we're seeing," Kate said.

Woman left with huge scar after tummy tuck
This client had an abdominoplasty in Turkey and was left with a huge scar -Credit:Supplied

Kate highlighted she is not fully against Turkey surgery, but is pushing for women to be more aware of the potential risks.

When asked why Kate thinks women are going ahead with it in the first place, she reasons: "I've spoken to each and every one of these patients and they will all tell me the same thing. They had no idea it was that bad. They do not have access to the right information. There is no support for these patients and they are coming back and they've learned the hard way."

Woman's black scarring around stomach
This woman had a tummy tuck, and says she was given no aftercare whatsoever -Credit:Supplied

The clinic owner also believes anyone offering health tourism should have an English-speaking base in the UK to allow for liability should something go wrong. "If anything, it's getting worse," Kate added. "We were seeing two to three a week, now it's over 15 patients a week and we just haven't got the capacity.

"Complications in the field of non-surgical and surgical procedures are only on the rise. There needs to be more transparency."

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