Woman Left With Lumpy Lips And 'Piggy Snout' After Surgery Goes Wrong
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A woman says she wishes she'd never gone under the knife after five 'botched' surgeries have left her with a 'piggy snout' and unable to smile properly.
Ellen Gonzalez, 42, originally turned to cosmetic surgery after being bullied over her looks when she was a child.
However, she was less than pleased with the results when she had silicone lip injections in 2004 and was left even more upset after two nose surgeries, in 2016 and 2017, left her with a 'piggy snout'.
Things then went from bad to worse when she attempted to get her lips fixed - so they wouldn't 'look fake anymore' - but was left unable to smile or eat properly.
The mum-of-three from Stamford, Connecticut, said: "I wish I'd never touched my face. I feel ugly and unattractive. I don't want to be fake anymore.
"I went through a lot of trauma as a child which is why I got plastic surgery. I wanted to have control over my body.
"I was bullied to the point of wanting to commit suicide and I ran away from home to get away from my bullies.
"When bullies tell you that you're fat, ugly, that you would be better off dead, you do anything to change that impression of yourself.
"For me, surgery was [about] making me look beautiful. But I missed an entire year of my daughter's basketball, Christmas and Thanksgiving because I didn't go to anything [after the surgery]. I didn't go anywhere.
"I can't eat or drink properly. Food falls out of my mouth, and if I drink liquids and I'm not leaning the right way, they come out too. I have to drink with a straw.
"Now I suck my bottom lip in, so people don't notice. I've been practising and if I suck it in, I look normal as long as I don't smile.
"People need to put in research and know what the procedures entail."
Ellen's journey with cosmetic surgery began more than 15 years ago when she had her lips done.
She said: "Years ago [in 2004], my friend told me about a lady who was doing fat shots, tattoo eyebrows and lip fillers, but it wasn't a real clinic.
"She injected my lips and [...] I immediately felt they were too big but she assured me they'd get smaller.
"She said it was non-permanent and would be gone in a few years - that was 2004.
"In 2016, my daughter had a tumour on her neck and the surgeon said, 'I could fix your breathing problems for you too'. He told me to stop by his office.
"He originally did a rhinoplasty, but [my nose] was turned up like a little piggy snout. It didn't look natural.
"It was like I had two separate noses. One part was going one way, then I had a crazy-looking nose tip that was very, very pointy.
"The second time he went back in, he took fat from my stomach and added it to my nose. Now I've got an even bigger nose than when I started.
"While he was doing that, he said he'd make my lips a little smaller too. Instead of cutting straight across, he cut one side higher than the other.
"I asked him for an explanation and he didn't answer me. He said it looked good and if I didn't like them, he'd fix them again."
Once out of surgery, Ellen was shocked to see how lumpy her mouth was and in the coming days her stitches became infected and the wounds in her lips started to weep with pus.
Ellen says now she's been left with a 'protruding' bottom lip and her mouth is full of scars - as a result, Ellen says her confidence has taken a nose dive and she is unable to talk properly due to her misshapen lips.
She added: "The bottom lip on the right side hangs down slightly. So when I close my mouth, air goes in it and I constantly have dry mouth.
"They were very lumpy. I've gone through the ringer with this. It's messed my mouth up.
"I got infections in my lips. I had very bad luck. All my stitches opened up and it was massively infected.
"I used to take pictures all the time, but now I don't want to."
Due to her financial position, Ellen says she has no choice but to return to the same surgeon to try and get her face fixed and will go under the knife once again next month.
She explained: "I'm now out of work so I don't have the option for another doctor.
"The surgeon who did it is doing a re-surgery to fix it. I have literally written down three pages [of notes] and gone over it, stating 'do not cut my top lip'.
"My next surgery is in February. I'm not feeling very well about trusting him again, but I don't have any options.
"I'm trying to do them as small as possible. I've got scars on my lips now. I don't want to keep adding scars.
"My goal is to go back to looking like myself so that my daughters have good self-worth and self-esteem. [I don't want them to] think that over-inflated Barbie was the only way to feel beautiful."