The medical license of Dr. Walton James Montegut, a plastic surgeon at New Contours in Newport Beach, was placed on three years probation effective last Friday, according to the Medical Board of California.
“Dr. Montegut’s compassionate approach with his patients earned him a loyal patient following,” reads the bio on his New Contours website. “His innate artistic dimension gives a unique outcome for the patients that is proof positive of his talent. Dr. Montegut’s mastery of “Fat Transfer” has enhanced his practice dramatically. A sub specialty in itself, the art of fat transfer raises the bar in perfection for plastic surgery.”
However, the Medical Board is not singling out Montegut for his perfection. The state discipline, based on the evidence attached to the Stipulated Settlement and Disciplinary Order signed by the plastic surgeon and his lawyer Henry Lewin on Nov. 3 of last year, comes as the result of “grossly negligent care and treatment of four patients.”
A 63-year-old woman got a fat transfer to her face and upper and lower extremities on Sept. 15, 2008, a local procedure to her face on Aug. 20, 2009, breast augmentation and a tummy tuck on Oct. 27, 2009, a butt lift on Aug. 30, 2010, and a breast implant replacement on June 5, 2011. Montegut could not produce for medical board investigators a history of physical exams, pre- and post-operative photographs nor dated and properly formatted progress notes on the patient.
Also, that patient received 55 prescriptions for controlled substances that treat pain, induce sleep and battle anxiety. These totaled 60 to 100 pills a month for five years, according to the board.
A 59-year-old woman with a history of narcolepsy and daily use of the appetite suppressant phentermine received botox treatments and phentermine prescription refills—500 tablets at a time—from August 2007-August 2011. She received 200 pills bi-monthly until Jan. 7, 2014. But Montegut’s records for the patient did not show this, and she continued getting refills through the doctor three years after the last visit his office noted.
Montegut had no history, physical or photographs in his records for a 42-year-old woman who first visited him in October 2007 and got a fat transfer procedure to her face in the summer of 2008. Records show she received 25 Xanax and Ambien prescriptions over a 40-month period from 2009-13, but nothing was noted about why the patient would have required daily, long-term use of the powerful medications.
That patient’s 58-year-old husband, during five different visits from Oct. 7, 2008, through April 29, 2009, got fat injections, a face and neck lift, minor skin excisions, liposuction, repair of his eyelids, a nose job and scar revision. But Montegut’s records for him show no history, physical exams or photographs.
The man received 49 prescriptions for zolpidem (a sedative like Ambien) and alprazolam (like Xanax) from August 2008 through April 2014, but Montegut’s records only noted the zolpidem and there was no indication why chronic, long term use of the drugs was warranted.
During Montegut’s probation, he must complete medical ethics, education, prescribing and record-keeping courses. His practice will be monitored by the state, and he must obey all laws, provide progress reports to the board, make himself available for further board interviews and tell hospitals and clinics where he has privileges of his probationary status.
Failure to abide by the conditions could lead to license revocation procedures, according to the board.