It is the second such incident this year.
A 22-year-old woman has been rushed to a hospital emergency department after complications during a breast enlargement procedure.
It is the second time this year that a patient has had a cardiac arrest at the clinic, one of Australia’s most popular.
The Victorian woman was undergoing a breast enlargement procedure at The Cosmetic Institute’s Bondi Clinic in Sydney when she suffered what a spokeswoman for the company described as an “adverse reaction”.
The ABC reports that the patient’s heart stopped beating.
Doctors at The Cosmetic Institute stabilised the woman before she was transferred to Vincent’s Hospital in a serious but stable condition.
A spokesman for the hospital told Fairfax Media the woman was in a stable condition in the intensive care unit.
A similar situation in January has caused experts concern.
Amy Rickhuss, 22, had a cardiac arrest while undergoing breast augmentation surgery at The Cosmetic Institute in Parramatta.
She told the ABC: “The second pocket was made and then my heart started going out of rhythm. And then that’s when they had to stop the procedure itself.”
The ABC reports that NSW Health Care Complaints Commission is investigating reports she was given the drug Intralipid – used to reverse the effects of local anaesthetic toxicity.
Ms Rickhuss told Fairfax Media she had a friend in the Bondi clinic at the time the second young woman suffered complications. She said she was shocked it had happened again.
“My friend was there when the alarm went off,” Ms Rickhuss said.
“Something needs to be done,” she said. “I’ll do what I can to help other girls.”
When her surgery went wrong she wrote on Facebook urging others not to fear similar complications.
“[I] have tried to be honest and tell my story and encourage other girls not to be afraid just because of what happened to me,” she wrote on Facebook in February.
“It was an extremely unusual occurrence that could have happened on any operating table anywhere. ”
But it now seems that senior members of the Australasian College of Cosmetic Surgery fear such incidents aren’t entirely isolated.
The ABC reports that a group wrote to the Health Care Complaints Commission earlier this year with concerns The Cosmetic Institute “may be placing patients at risk … by providing surgery under deep sedation while not being properly licensed to do so”.
The Cosmetic Institute is only licensed to provide conscious, or twilight sedation.
Fairfax Media reports that the Health Care Complaints Commission is investigating the incident at The Cosmetic Institute as well as two others from different clinics.
A spokesman for St Vincent’s Hospital confirmed it had recently admitted a cosmetic surgery patient to the hospital’s intensive care unit “due to local anaesthesia toxicity”.
“Owing to patient confidentiality, we are not in a position to go into any more detail,” he told Fairfax Media.
The Cosmetic Institute released a statement confirming an adverse event at involving a female during a standard breast augmentation procedure at its Bondi Junction clinic yesterday. It read:
“Our surgeon and specialist anaesthetist were able to immediately stabilise her on site, and as a precautionary matter we arranged an ambulance transfer to a local hospital for further treatment and observation, where she is now recovering.
Given the patient confidentiality agreements we have with all our patients, we are unable to provide more details other than to say she is safe and stable.
Patient safety is always front and centre of all our procedures at The Cosmetic Institute clinics. No further medical information can be provided at this stage nor can we speculate on what may have been the cause. We will be maintaining close contact with the patient.”
The Cosmetic Institute describes itself as “Australia’s largest and most trusted cosmetic surgery clinic,” claiming it performs around 5,000 breast procedures each year – at about half the price of many other clinics.
It says it has about 60 per cent of the local breast augmentation market.