Health officials in the Dominican Republic have vowed to investigate but the family of Alexandra Medina feels little will come from the probe and worries for the safety of others.
According to CBS New York, Medina, 33, saved for a trip to the Dominican Republic in order to have a tummy tuck and liposuction after she was refused by doctors in the states.
Medina was reportedly told she would need to lose weight in order to proceed with the procedures. After searching she found Dr. Félix Almánzar on Facebook and he agreed to perform the surgery even with the risk.
“This doctor was like, ‘No problem. We can do it. We can handle it. We’ve dealt with bigger women, so come here. We’ll do it.’ And it was obviously also cheaper,” Maxine David, Medina’s sister, told CBS New York. David described her sister as “savvy, smart, vibrant, passionate.”
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On Friday Medina stopped breathing on the operating tabled due to a blood clot while the procedure took place at a clinic in Santo Domingo. Her death certificate confirmed the cause of death was a fatty tissue embolism. She leaves behind a 14-year-old son and a husband.
According to media report in the Dominican Republic, the facility had recently reopened after being closed due to “irregularities.” Medina is the third American to die in the Dominican Republic over the last month from plastic surgery complications.
An Alabama high school teacher named Alicia Renette Williams, 45 died on June 2 after traveling to the country for an elective procedure according to WAFB. One week later, Manuel Nuñez, 28, of New York died after undergoing liposuction in the Dominican Republic Telemundo 47 reports.
The CDC has issued numerous warnings advising against medical tourists opting to have plastic surgery in the Dominican Republic.
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