This week a court has heard how a breast surgeon carried out “unnecessary” operations “for no medically justifiable reason”. 

Ian Paterson, 59, is currently in Nottingham Crown Court with the charge of 20 counts of wounding with intent against nine women and one man. This included one woman who was told she needed a double mastectomy or risk “full-blown cancer” – but tests showed no sign of malignancy. 

Prosecutor Julian Christopher QC noted that some of the patients developed mental health issues as a result of Mr Paterson’s invention or exaggeration of cancer risks. 

Mr Paterson, who worked at the Heart of England NHS Trust and various private Spire Healthcare hospitals in the West Midlands between 1994 and 2011, was claimed to be “extremely experienced” in his field by Mr Christopher. The charges against Mr Paterson relate to the time between 1997 and 2011, who was suspended by the General Medical Council in October 2012. 

Mr Christopher added that the prosecution may suggest that the operations were carried out to allow the surgeon to earn extra money and maintain his image as a busy surgeon, instead of being in the best interests of the patients. 

The trial is expected to be 10 weeks long. 

Thompsons Solicitors is representing many of Paterson’s patients in civil cases.