Day Spa Owner Charged with Aiding in the Unlicensed Practice of Medicine


The owner of a day spa has been charged with a felony after a customer was burned during treatment.

Kim Anna Arvdalen, owner of The Chocolate Day Spa, has been charged with one felony count of conspiring and aiding and abetting in the unlicensed practice of medicine.  The spa, which was located on Bristol Street in Costa Mesa, is now closed.

Arvdalen’s co-conspirator, registered nurse Mary C. Lamb, was charged with one felony count of practicing medicine without a license.  Since the filing of criminal charges, Lamb has passed away.

The felony charge against Arvdalen was filed by the Orange County District Attorney’s Office after an investigation conducted through the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation by the Health Quality Investigation Unit Tustin Field Office.

The investigation stemmed from a consumer complaint that was sent to the Medical Board of California.  The complaint alleged that a patient was burned and scarred after receiving intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment from Lamb at The Chocolate Day Spa.

When the patient later obtained copies of her medical records, they contained a release form she denied signing.  The release form was co-signed by the spa’s medical director, Dr. James McVeigh, who died one month before the form was purportedly signed.

Lamb admitted that she had performed both IPL treatments and laser hair removal on the patient without the patient receiving a medical evaluation from McVeigh or from any other physician as required by law.  Registered nurses may only perform these treatments while working under the supervision of a physician and only after the patient has been evaluated by that physician.

Arvdalen was licensed as an esthetician from 2004 to 2012, but her license is currently delinquent.  She pleaded not guilty on July 8, 2015.  She will be in court again on September 24, 2015.