A young mum who sued a top plastic surgeon over her “droopy” boobs is facing up to a crushing £50,000 legal bill after losing her compensation claim.
Claire Worrall, whose breasts had shrunk from a DD to a C-cup after breast feeding her four kids, wanted to “look good for her wedding”.
She contacted Dr Helena Antoniadou through the Make Yourself Amazing website and the then 28-year-old went under the knife in 2010.
But Mrs Worrall from Huddersfield was horrified by the results and sued Dr Antoniadou, claiming she was given negligent advice before the operation.
“She was concerned at what she perceived to be the droopiness of her breasts,” the Court of Appeal, in London, heard.
A judge ruled Dr Atoniadou responsible for Miss Worrall’s bitter disappointment last year and ordered her to pay £14,378 in damages.
But now two appeal judges have reversed that decision and exonerated the surgeon.
Dr Antoniadou could not be blamed if Mrs Worrall left the pre-operative consultation with “the wrong end of the stick,” they ruled.
Mrs Worrall was ordered to repay the compensation, with interest, and hit with a £35,000 legal costs bill as the price of defeat.
The court heard earlier that Mrs Worrall had a 34DD bra size before nursing her children reduced her to a C-cup.
Jeremy Roussak QC, for Dr Antoniadou, explained: “She was getting married in three months and wanted to look good for her wedding.”
She discussed the surgical options with Dr Antoniadou and decided to opt for a “relatively minor” double breast implant.
Mrs Worrall, now 35, was clear that she didn’t want the more radical mastopexy breast uplift procedure, which involved some scarring.
The implants were fitted in August 2010 – two months before her wedding – and Mrs Worrall was at first delighted with the results.
But Lord Justice Tomlinson said her breasts “began to droop” again not long afterwards.
A horrified Mrs Worrall was advised that she now needed a mastopexy, which the clinic agreed to carry out free of charge.
But the judge said that proved impossible after she suffered a minor heart attack and the discovery of cardiac problems ruled out surgery.
In June last year, Judge Neil Davey QC ruled that Dr Antoniadou had been negligent.
He said Mrs Worrall had left the consultation with “the impression” that she would not need an uplift for five to 10 years.
Although that was not the advice the surgeon gave, English was not her mother tongue, she “spoke very quickly” and there had been “a misunderstanding.” Overturning the decision and stripping Mrs Worrall of her payout, Lord Justice Tomlinson ruled that Dr Antoniadou had done nothing wrong.
The advice she gave her patient was correct and she was not responsible for Mrs Worrall “getting hold of the wrong end of the stick.”
“A medical professional ought not to be held liable in such circumstances,” concluded the judge, who was sitting with Lord Justice David Richards.
Mrs Worrall was ordered to repay the £14,378 compensation and must now also pay the legal costs of Dr Antoniadou’s defence.
She was ordered to pay £35,000 in costs on account, pending final assessment of her bill, which could ultimately be double that sum.
Mr Roussak earlier told the court that Mrs Worrall had been “absolutely determined” to have the breast implants.
She was “very unhappy about the size and shape of her breasts” and, after she complained, the cost of the implants was refunded to her.