SAN ANTONIO – Having had plastic surgery before, Irma LeCroy consulted a physician about having a "Brazilian butt lift," the common name for a buttocks augmentation surgery, or gluteoplasty.
"He told me I was going be in at 10 (a.m.), out at 5 (p.m.). It was real simple. He was going to cut me, (but) he wasn't going to do anything major," LeCroy said.
Three weeks later, LeCroy was in recovery following the procedure, when she remembers waking up having trouble breathing.
She was transported to Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas for emergency surgery.
"They removed all the fat he had injected into my buttocks and they cut me on both sides and removed it," LeCroy said.
As a result of the initial fat transfer surgery, LeCroy had to have muscles removed from her thighs and buttocks.
"I can't sit for more than two hours (and) my legs hurt all the time," LeCroy said.
She underwent 26 more surgeries and now has drop foot and spends much of her time walking with braces, a condition she said has kept her from working.
"As a result of this, her house has been foreclosed on," said LeCroy's attorney, Jim Mitchell. "She has literally lost everything."
She is not only filing suit against the doctor, but also against the company who sold the doctor the Vaser Lipo machine.
"Lipo-suction is an actual surgical procedure, so it ought to be an actual surgeon who that does this," said facial plastic surgeon Dr. John Morehead.
His preference is a board-certified surgeon.
In addition to facial plastic surgery, Morehead performs cosmetic procedures like Botox and fillers.
He warns patients to choose someone with training and experience.
"I think maybe something that's maybe under-sung and under-appreciated is an artistic bent ... an artistic aptitude on the part of the practitioner," Morehead said.
With laser hair removal procedures, Morehead recommends researching the technician's training.
"Probably the most important is training on that specific equipment and that's usually rendered by the manufacturer of the equipment," Morehead said.
In addition to training, experience and skill, Morehead values word-of-mouth recommendations.