Nightmare experience

I'm writing this to hopefully save somebody a lot of time, money and heartache. Do not give these people your money. I scheduled my Dec 2020 surgery in Dec 2019 after being pressured that the price would go up if I didn't schedule. I gave a large, fully refundable deposit of half the surgery amount (required to hold a surgery date). My concerns started when I set an appointment to meet the surgeon who would be operating on me and he was on lunch during my appointment time. The entire appointment was to meet him and talk through my expectations. The staff had to go find him and after some time he came in and clearly had no idea I was there to meet with him that day. The appointment felt rushed and he contradicted everything that the saleswoman had said to me in my first consultation. It seemed the saleswoman had just lied to get the sale, but I was open to adjusting my expectations and the doctor did seem warm and competent. I gave a cash deposit with the promise of an email receipt. Athenix didn't send the email. It took multiple calls and emails over a week just to get a receipt for the deposit. Because I had scheduled so far in advance, I made another consultation appointment a month before the surgery date to confirm what results would be on my current body and if I wanted to proceed with the surgery. I had been told in the beginning I could have as many appointments as I needed to feel comfortable. I arrived to this appointment and they tried to give me new client paperwork, they had no idea who I was or why I was there. I became very concerned when I found out that everyone I had interacted with, from the desk staff, to the saleswoman to the manager no longer worked there. While the first couple of appointments had been on time, this one ran over 30 minutes late, parking in the building is by the hour and very expensive, they don't validate. When I went to check if they had forgotten me in this little room, they sent in the regional manager and I laid out my concerns. She was very reassuring and didn't hide the fact of the staff turnover and explained away the administrative issues I'd had as new staff being trained. I was told that the front desk staff was "not up to par" but the surgery staff had all been there for awhile so I shouldn't worry. I wish I had canceled the surgery at this time. I had been told the doctor was on vacation so I needed to wait to get the instructions for my lab work, but was assured I would have it well in advance. When I had some unexpected time off, I called to see if I could move the surgery date sooner. I was told that morning the scheduler would call me back, they didn't. I called back the following day and not only could they not move the date, they didn't realize they had never sent me the information for the lab work and were now requesting additional medical clearance from my doctor a week before my pre-op appointment. I was told I should have been sent a few emails when I booked the surgery, which was a year ago at this point, that I had never been sent. Over the next couple of days I received a 20 page document to sign, including an arbitration agreement that I wasn't expecting. I explained over email that I wasn't sure if I was comfortable signing something that said I couldn't sue if I'd been hurt or disfigured by the surgery, especially after I'd gotten very vague answers about how Athenix addresses cases where the client isn't happy with the results. Within minutes I received a phone call saying that I didn't have to sign the arbitration agreement that day, but would be required to sign before my surgery or there would be no surgery. I felt blindsided, this was 3 weeks out from a surgery I had planned a year out, had saved for, had arranged time off and care for. I won't lie, I absolutely lost my temper. I spoke to the manager who said she would check with corporate if I was required to sign the agreement, I still don't understand how no customer had asked about this in the past that they didn't know their policy. A week later, after begging my doctor's office for an appointment for medical clearance last minute and spending hundreds on bloodwork, I received a call saying that while corporate did not require me to sign the arbitration agreement the surgeon would not do the surgery. I explained that having now had a week to research and get legal advice from friends, it seemed the arbitration agreements are somewhat standard in sue-happy Los Angeles and I had reconsidered. I was then told that Athenix only wanted "happy patients" and that because I had to follow up on literally every interaction with the staff because they didn't do what they said they would I was simply too much drama. My surgery was canceled 2 weeks before the scheduled date, but that's not all! I'm now trying to recover the $10,000 deposit I gave Athenix over a year ago. After canceling my surgery, the manager stopped taking my calls or responding to my emails. I was sent an email with no body and an attachment for refund of deposit that said Athenix would deduct $500 for cancelation. I called and explained that I was told I would receive the full deposit, they said that was just on the form and didn't apply to me, when I said I wasn't comfortable signing a form that said they could keep $500 they got frustrated, said that I was "unnecessarily complicating things" and that they would simply use the email I had written to confirm the conversation I'd had with the manager regarding my refund. I have in writing from Athenix that my refund would be processed in 30 days, it wasn't. I have a complaint in with the BBB, do yourself a favor and look at the complaints against them, they have a C rating. I know Athenix is a cheaper option, that's certainly how I justified staying with them after the many moments my gut told me not to go with them, but this is your body and your health.

User's recommendation: Find another surgeon.

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ID
#2378482 Review #2378482 is a subjective opinion of poster.
Location
Pasadena, California
New Reviewer

Refund requested and get repeated delays

I signed up for a procedure for liposuction in April. At the time it was determined that I had high blood pressure so was delayed. I tried to get on meds and have BP regulated took some time, and was unsure I was going to proceed with it. By mid November I cancelled and requested a refund, and was told it could take 6 weeks, or up to 2 months max. Called mid December, was told not sure of a timeframe, maybe a couple more weeks. Called early February, said I was "next in line", not sure why only one refund can be processed at a time, and told it would go out that Friday, and they would call. Called the following Tuesday, they're not sure why it didn't happen, would call the accounting department and call me back, but no call! Another Friday passed and still nothing! It's been 3 months!
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3 comments
#1890250

YOUR $7.00 REFUND DOESNT SEEM WORTH ALL THE TIME AND EFFORT YOUR PUTTING IN TO GET IT BACK.

#1665852

Just a follow up on this - I finally got my money back. Above it says monetary value was $7, it was actually $7k.

#1648228

I’m glad I read the review, it was very helpful. I won’t be going to Athenix or sona belo. One bad review is too many.

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ID
#1473839 Review #1473839 is a subjective opinion of poster.
Cons
  • Not getting my refund in a timely manner
Reason of review
Return, Exchange or Cancellation Policy
Loss
$7
Preferred solution
Full refund

Waste of money and time

waste of money my body is ruined and reputation runied
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ID
#1437779 Review #1437779 is a subjective opinion of poster.
Location
Fresno, California
Cons
  • Outcome and customer service
Reason of review
Bad quality
Loss
$10
Preferred solution
Full refund
New Reviewer

Still waiting for my return