Since the story on Lake Oswego Dr. Darm's Twitter libel case hit the Mercury almost a month ago, we've received a surprising slew of responses from doctors and lawyers alike on one certain aspect: labeling Darm as a "plastic surgeon."
Darm's attorney, Thomas McDermott, explained his stance in an email to the Mercury : "Dr. Darm is not, and has never claimed to be, a plastic surgeon." Instead, the lawyer says Dr. Darm goes by the title "aesthetic surgeon."
However, unknowing consumers and journalists alike could easily be confused by Dr. Darm's website into assuming that Darm actually is a plastic surgeon. Here's a screenshot from his "Plastic Surgery" page with Darm's signature leaving a stamp of approval:
So we asked the American Society of Plastic Surgeons what they thought. Their response: "Anyone can call themselves a plastic surgeon (which is why we see so many consumers with botched procedures performed by someone claiming to be a plastic or cosmetic surgeon)." But members of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons must be board certified. So, while Darm may not be a certified plastic surgeon, it's not illegal for him to call himself one. Or us, for that matter. Still, we're going to tack a clarification about Dr. Darm's title onto the full story.
While Darm is without this certification, his website, again, could easily be misinterpreted. Here's a screenshot on the right from a video displaying before and after plastic surgery photos coupled with Darm's website name and apparent title: Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Darm may have another doctor working under him as a board certified plastic surgeon, but the clarification is lacking. We contacted Darm's office and left a message and have yet to receive a response.