Nevada: No room for untrained docs who perform plastic surgery
You can still lose your shirt in Nevada, but it is less likely that you will undergo botched plastic surgery. News 3, Las Vegas TV News, reports that new laws go into effect this month to control how doctors advertise themselves. Here is what doctors are now required to indicate in their ads:
- Are you board-certified?
- What are you board-certified in?
Before the law was enacted, doctors could advertise services in a number of areas, not just the areas they had board certification in. For example, a board-certified gynecologist might claim that he or she "specialized" in breast augmentation. After this new ruling, it will still be legal for such doctors to perform these procedures, but it will be illegal for them to advertise that they "specialize" in them.
Stephen Seldon was a Las Vegas ENT who placed ads in local magazines offering Botox at reduced prices. Seldon claimed he was certified and specially trained by the manufacturer to administer Botox injections. Patients signed consent forms granting permission for Botox injections, but what Seldon did was inject patients with Tritox, a much less expensive botulinum toxin preparation designed for research, not humans. Seldon was subsequently arrested and sent to prison. In 2004, Tritox caused botulism in four people.
Michael Edwards, MD a plastic surgeon and president elect of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, helped to author the new Las Vegas bill. According to Edwards, the purpose of the bill is patient safety - he estimates that 70% of his patients come in looking to fix a botched plastic surgery procedure they had from a non-specialized surgeon. Expressly, all doctors must have board certification information clearly stated in their office signage and in print, website and any other advertising platform they use.
But the law is only half the battle. The other half is consumer education. Consumers are responsible for establishing that their provider is board-certified in the specialty in which they are being treated. If you want to check out a plastic surgeon's credentials, NEWS 3 suggests that you visit the ASAPS website .