A surgeon who worked for both the NHS and private healthcare for almost 20 years is on trial at Nottingham Crown Court for carrying out a series of damaging and unnecessary breast operations, the BBC has revealed.

It is currently unclear why Ian Paterson, a general consultant, chose to pursue such an extraordinary path, although there have been suggestions that financial gain or the desire to maintain a successful image may have played a part.

What is clear, however, is the devastating impact his actions have had on his victims, one of whom is only 25 years old.

More than one victim underwent a double mastectomy on Mr. Paterson’s advice, despite it being subsequently discovered that there was no sign of malignant cancer and the operations being unjustified by the test results.

All the victims seem to have been lied to about the severity of their conditions and the need for surgery. Test results have been falsified and risks exaggerated.

Julian Christopher, QC, acting against Mr Paterson commented that “Ian Paterson was lying to patients and to their GPs…about the patient’s condition, exaggerating or quite simply inventing risks of cancer, in order to justify carrying out serious operations which were quite unnecessary.”

Mr. Paterson was suspended by the General Medical Council in 2012.

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