Prominent BBC newsreader Kate Silverton is to sue a leading London surgeon over a botched up laser skin rejuvenation. The procedure had left her face so badly marked she was unable to work for two weeks.
One of the most recent innovations in anti-aging remedies has been laser skin resurfacing, which improves the appearance of fine lines or wrinkles, scars, and hyperpigmentation (discolored areas of the skin), primarily around the eyes and mouth. It can also be used to treat large areas of the face.
Laser skin resurfacing has gained popularity recently because of its advantages over alternative approaches that may cause discomfort, bleeding, and bruising, all of which mean a longer recovery time. The result of more youthful-looking skin means laser skin resurfacing can be psychologically rejuvenating as well.
In the case of the 37-year-old Miss Silverton the procedure left her face covered in painful and unsightly swellings.
She returned to work last week and has instructed lawyers to begin proceedings following her experience at the Jan Stanek clinic in London, Daily Mail reports.
Miss Silverton said: "It's been awful. I went in to get some minor scarring on my cheeks treated.
"I was told it would be a routine procedure and I'd be back to work in days. The treatment, however, caused a massive skin reaction."
Richard Follis of Shoosmiths solicitors in Birmingham, who is acting for Miss Silverton, said: "Kate had a very nasty experience following what was meant to be a minor procedure.
"She is fortunately now well on the road to recovery. We have made a claim against the surgeon and are awaiting a response."
Miss Silverton visited Dr Stanek's clinic last month and was advised that the Fraxel laser surgery available at the clinic would be the safest and most effective way to treat some minor scars on her face.
Dr Stanek, who specialises in cosmetic surgery, is considered to be one of the best in the industry and was the first to use Botox in Britain. He has also appeared on a number of television shows including Channel 4's Ten Years Younger.
His website says: "The Fraxel SR improves skin condition by affecting only a fraction of your skin at a time with thousands of tiny microscopic laser spots.
"There is no recovery time though post-treatment redness may persist for a few days."
Even otherwise Fraxel SR is touted as a treatment in which skin resurfacing is done through "tiny areas of thermal wounds in a dot-like grid. It leaves areas of healthy skin in between. Healthy cells in the untouched spots promote rapid healing of the entire area."
A colleague at the BBC said Kate was wearing heavy make-up to hide the sores and redness from the treatment. They added: "Kate was conscious of some scarring on her face, and was worried that the very faint scars, which were left from an acne outbreak, would be visible on high-definition cameras.
"She did some research and was told that Dr Stanek was the best person to see.
"She was assured the procedure would be non-intrusive, safe and efficient and that she would need two or three sessions. She went in for the treatment earlier this month and within hours of returning home she suffered a terrible reaction.
"Kate was in a huge amount of pain and her face was covered in awful spots and sores. Her whole face swelled up. She was absolutely horrified. There was no way she could go on air and she was forced to take two weeks off."
Last night a spokesman for Jan Stanek's clinic said: "Due to patient confidentiality we would not be able to discuss any patients who have had treatment at this clinic."