Nurse sues Belo, surgeon

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — A NURSE based in the United States yesterday filed a complaint before the Makati City Prosecutor’s Office against Vicki Belo and one of her cosmetic surgeons for bungling a wrinkle-remo- ving operation that damaged her face.

Accompanied by her lawyer Arnold Naval, Leila Palaganas filed a six-page supplemental complaint-affidavit to support the original complaint she lodged against Belo and Dr. Jennifer Roslyn Sison-De Leon on Feb. 20.

Belo and Sison-De Leon were charged with reckless imprudence resulting in serious physical injuries over the supposedly incorrect wrinkle-removing operation conducted on the complainant on July 8, 2008.

The complainant is seeking P20 million in damages. She also wants the respondents’ medical and business licenses revoked.

Palaganas, 50, who works at the Rahway Hospital in New Jersey, dared Belo and the surgeon to meet her and see for themselves the damage on her face.

“I have lost my self-esteem. Now I find it hard to look at other people,” Pala-ganas told reporters.

She said that she went to the clinic of the Belo Medical Group at Medical Plaza, Makati City in the belief that they have the most competent and reliable surgeons but she was proven wrong as she showed the darkened scars and lesions on her cheeks.

Second Assistant Prosecutor Edgardo Hirang set the hearing on March 17, when the respondents will be filing their counter-affidavits.

Naval said their supplemental complaint-affidavit contained the prescriptions and medical certificates De Leon issued to Palaganas several days after the operation.

In one such certificate, the surgeon stated that the patient (Palaganas) developed blistering mostly on her right cheek.

“The blisters have completely healed but scabs are still very visible on her right cheek. Her face is still a bit swollen,” De Leon said in her July 16, 2008 certificate.

Naval pointed out that these observations done by De Leon were admissions that she bungled the otherwise simple procedure she performed on Palaganas.

The nurse said she was forced to file a leave from work to go to the Philippines and file a complaint when it became clear that Belo and De Leon had totally ignored her condition.