From: Tanki <5191 ...="" gmail.com="">
Subject: CEO dies during Liposuction procedure
YTL Pacific Star CEO dies after cosmetic surgery (ST 7 Jan)
Posted by admin 6 January, 2010
THE chief executive of a $1 billion property firm died last week,
following cosmetic treatment at an Orchard Road clinic.
On Dec 30, 44-year-old Franklin Heng was ferried by ambulance from the
clinic to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
TTSH chief executive Lim Suet Wun said the case has been referred to
‘The patient came from a GP clinic and had had liposuction done
earlier that afternoon,’ he told The Straits Times.
Although Mr Heng showed no signs of life when he arrived at the
hospital just after 5pm, doctors spent almost an hour attempting to
resuscitate him, said Dr Lim.
A spokesman for the Health Ministry also said it was investigating the
She added: ‘As this is a coroner’s case and investigations are
ongoing, we are unable to comment further on the case.’
Citing the same reason, family members also declined comment.
Coroners investigate cases where the circumstances surrounding a death
are unclear or the cause of death cannot be immediately ascertained.
Late last night, police said they had classified the case as one of
unnatural death, and are investigating.
Mr Heng was the CEO of YTL Pacific Star, a property management firm,
which among other things manages the Starhill Global Reit.
He was credited with growing the reit’s portfolio from just stakes in
shopping malls Wisma Atria and Ngee Ann City, to 10 properties around
A close friend of Mr Heng, who did not want to be named, said the
divorcee and father of two was concerned about ‘love-handles’ although
he appeared to be ‘fit, trim and in the pink of health’.
It was not his first visit to the GP clinic, according to a security
officer at the building where the clinic is based.
The security officer, who was on duty on the day of Mr Heng’s final
visit, said the ambulance arrived at about 4pm and ‘the man was still
alive when the ambulance left for the hospital’.
Official records show that the clinic is a two-man practice registered
about six months ago.
Its website says its two doctors have together carried out more than
500 Vaser Liposelection procedures and 100 High Definition Vaser
These treatments remove ‘deep and superficial fat’ followed by a
‘detailed sculpting process’, it explains.
Straits Times checks found that it costs at least $3,000 for treatment
in the ‘tummy area’. The procedure takes about three hours at the
Several attempts to contact the doctor who performed the treatment at
both his clinic and his registered home address drew a blank.
Requests to speak to him were met with responses such as ‘He’s not
here’, and ‘I don’t know where he is – we don’t have our doctors’
Asked about the doctors’ qualifications, the clinic’s staff said they
were both dermatologists – or specialists in skin problems.
But a check with the Singapore Medical Council registry of doctors
shows them both listed as general practitioners with diplomas in
Liposuction has acquired a variety of names, including lipodissolve
and liposelection, while the procedures and solutions used, as well as
the amount of fat removed, may vary.
But essentially, the process involves injecting a solution to dissolve
fat in certain areas of the body. This fat is then removed through a
tube inserted through a small incision.
Complications could arise if a patient has underlying conditions, such
as a weak abdominal wall, which the doctor is not aware of. This could
result in a tear that would require immediate surgery to correct. An
inexperienced doctor might also puncture a vital organ, resulting in
In 2008, the ministry introduced new regulations following debate on
whether doctors who are not plastic surgeons should be allowed to
perform certain invasive cosmetic treatments.
Among other things, such doctors must now confine themselves to
removing no more than one litre of fat from a person at each session.
They also need additional staff to monitor the patient.
From these advertisements, many weak minded people
were tempted to undergo liposuction...as a short cut
to a trim figure...and shapely body.
The pictures, one with a fat belly and other with a shapely
flat belly after the surgery...will tempt those with cash ...to
undergo the knife.
In the USA, it is mandatory for the cosmetic surgeon
to inform the patient of the high risk of death.
According to MedicineNet.com there were 48,527 deaths
for the five years between 1993 to 1998 (more than
9,000 death a year). According to the surgeons who
operated on Heng, his is first fatal case in over 500
cases performed by them.
One in 500 is an extremely high risk.
Would Heng have chosen the procedure if the high
risk of death was made known to him.
If he was informed of the risk, then he had accepted
the risk: and he took a gamble and he lost...his life
He death serve as a timely reminder...to those
seeking a short cut to shapely figure.