Doctor Must Tell Women About Breast Implants

BOISE (CN) — A federal judge ordered an Idaho doctor to disclose information about non-FDA-approved breast implants he’s accused of importing from China and using in breast augmentation surgeries.
     U.S. District Judge Mark Bennett granted a temporary restraining order against Dr. Temp R. Patterson, requested by five of 16 women who accuse him of using Chinese-made breast implants not approved by the FDA in their surgeries.
     The May 25 order restrains Patterson “from further concealing and to disclose any and all information available to him regarding the source of breast implants that he has surgically placed in them.”
     Bennett ordered the disclosure by 8 p.m. on May 25, one day before plaintiff Camille Adams’ surgery to have her implants removed.
     “This disclosure shall be subject to a court-ordered protective order, the details of which the parties will subsequently discuss, but at this time, the disclosure shall only be for the use of plaintiff Adams, her counsel, and the doctor performing her implant removal,” Bennett wrote. “The doctor performing plaintiff Adams’ implant removal may rely on this information to advise the other plaintiffs concerning their treatment.”
     Adams is one of 16 plaintiffs in the May 18 amended complaint against Patterson, another doctor and the Ambulatory Surgery Center of Burley, Idaho. The women seeks damages for RICO violations, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, consumer law violations, battery, premises liability and medical malpractice.
     The women underwent breast implant surgeries by Dr. Patterson, who they accuse of running a fraudulent scheme to buy implants from China and using “false or fraudulent pretenses, representations and promises” to hide that the products were not FDA-approved.
     They claim that Patterson also imported counterfeit Botox from China.
     “Defendant knowingly devised and participated in a scheme to defraud whereby defendants would purchase over the Internet, import into the U.S. and then sell to customers in Idaho Chinese manufactured non-FDA approved silicone breast implants and counterfeit non-FDA Botox with counterfeit Allergan labels,” according their complaint.
     They also claim that Patterson botched some of their surgeries.
     “Due to defendant Patterson’s negligence during surgery, plaintiff Graham had a poor result, leaving her with bilateral malpositioned breast implants, with double bubble syndrome and breast tissue fallout/ptosis,” the complaint states.
     Plaintiff Donjua Moseley says she was an employee who marketed the implants to her friends and relatives, but stopped after she learned of the scheme.
     “When defendant then asked plaintiff Moseley to order an FDA-approved Mentor breast implant of a certain size so it could be photographed and added to the medical records of a patient (C.S.) who had non-FDA approved Chinese implants, plaintiff Moseley not only refused, but she resigned,” according to the complaint.
     The women say some patients still are not aware they have counterfeit breast implants, but those who do, want them out.
     “Most of the women have had problems, but some are concerned about [the implants] because they now believe they are not FDA-approved and are made in China,” plaintiffs’ attorney Richard Hearn told Courthouse News on Friday.
     “It’s fair to say that anybody who would buy the implants and Botox from China would do so because they can get them for much less and make more money by using them.”
     Hearn said the women fear the Chinese implants will leak silicon, a problem that U.S. manufacturers faced in the past. He said that because of the concealment, Patterson’s patients were not able to give informed consent to use the foreign, non-FDA approved products.
     Patterson did not respond to a phone call seeking comment over the weekend.
     The plaintiffs are represented by Hearn and Bruce Larsen of Hearn & Wood, in Burley.
     Judge Bennett is sitting on assignment from the Northern District of Iowa.

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