Plastic surgeon faces fine for 'bone towers'

SEOUL - A South Korean plastic surgeon faces a fine after building "bone towers" in a Gangnam district clinic filled with bone shards from hundreds of patients, a local official said yesterday.

The 60cm-tall glass structures were filled with jawbone parts removed during surgery, said the official at the Gangnam district office in Seoul.

The clinic specialises in jaw procedures, which are very popular in South Korea, especially among women aspiring to a thinner facial look with a V-shaped chin.

A photo of the "bone towers" posted on the clinic's website was removed after it went viral on the Internet, drawing a storm of online criticism.

"This is the most gross, disgusting image I've seen in recent memory," tweeted @dadaibadi.

The official said the act also contravened regulations requiring the disposal and incineration of body parts removed in medical procedures. "We visited the clinic after some people filed complaints, and plan to slap a fine of three million won (S$3,600)," the official, who declined to be identified, told AFP.

"Plus it does look unseemly," said the official, who added that the clinic has now removed the twin structures.

Nobody at the clinic was immediately available for comment.

The upscale Gangnam district - made famous by South Korean rapper Psy's global hit "Gangnam Style" - is home to high-end stores and apartments, and hundreds of plastic surgery clinics. Looks-obsessed South Korea is famed for its vast plastic surgery industry which incorporates radical procedures.