.A Westchester woman has reportedly become the third American to die in the Dominican Republic this month when she stopped breathing while on the operating table during liposuction.
New Rochelle resident Alexandra Medina stopped breathing during a procedure at a Dominican Republic clinic on Friday, July 5, according to a CBS News report. The Dominican health ministry has now opened an investigation, though Medina’s family reportedly doesn’t know if they’ll actually get any answers.
According to the report, Medina, whose age was not released, was unhappy with her appearance, and doctors stateside told her she needed to lose weight before getting liposuction, prompting her to seek cheaper, alternative options in the Dominican Republic and elsewhere.
During the liposuction surgery, Medina stopped breathing and subsequently died. A death certificate cited a blood clot as the cause of death. Medina’s death makes her the third American to die in a month while undergoing cosmetic surgery in the Caribbean nation.
“There are reasonable facilities in Europe, South America, et cetera, but they are usually subject to the same set of criteria we have here. To indiscriminately choose someplace on the basis of finances is a grave mistake,” Manhattan plastic surgeon Henry Spinelli said to CBS.
The report states that news outlets in Santo Domingo are reporting that the clinic where Medina died had recently been reopened after being closed for “irregularities.”
The FBI’s office in Miami said that it will also be investigating Medina’s death.
"At the request of Dominican authorities, the FBI continues to assist with the ongoing local investigation, to include support with toxicology as well as the arrival of a small team of FBI personnel in the Dominican Republic," the FBI said in a statement. "We refer you to the Dominican authorities for any further questions regarding their ongoing investigation.”
Earlier this year, a Mount Vernon couple was found dead in the Dominican Republic after they crashed into the Caribbean waters.
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