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Livingston plastic surgeon was mid-procedure during earthquake

The patient was under anesthesia at the time, so she didn't feel a thing. Instead, she was told about it when she woke up.

Amanda Lee

Apr 7, 2024, 9:52 PM

Updated 49 days ago

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If you thought Friday’s earthquake was a shocker, imagine being in surgery at the time.
Dr. John Paul Tutela is a plastic surgeon in Livingston who had a patient on the operating table during the quake.
"I was in the middle of a breast augmentation operation, and I was just sitting the patient up to see how everything looked and really at that moment, her breasts started jiggling," he said. “I realized it wasn't just her, it was the rest of the room."
The patient being operating on was Kendall Massey. She told News 12, "Dr. Tutela is amazing at what he does. I've been following him for a while, and I decided to go through with it. I've been thinking about it for a while."
The procedure lasted just under an hour. Dr. Tutela says thankfully the quake hit toward the end and not during the main part of the operation.
"You're making incisions, dissecting skin and breast tissue away from the chest wall, making sure bleeding is under control and during that whole process you're obviously near other vital structures," he said.
Massey was under anesthesia at the time, so she didn't feel a thing. Instead, she was told about it when she woke up.
"Once I was starting to feel more back to myself, I was thinking ‘Oh my gosh, I hope it wasn't when he was cutting and making incisions and stuff like that’ but I'm fine, everything worked out, I'm already feeling so amazing," she said.
Coincidentally, this isn't the first time she's had an experience like this:
"My birthday was yesterday, and I turned 30 and I was born in California during an earthquake so it’s like I brought the earthquake to New Jersey I guess.”


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