Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Law Blog

Miami Butt Lift Procedure Ends in Death

Posted by Briggs Bedigian | Oct 13, 2016 | 0 Comments

Plastic surgeons advertise their services in the newspaper, on billboards, and even on bus stops. Looking at their websites, you can find impressive examples of how the doctors can totally change a person's appearance, making them look younger, and giving them other enhanced assets. Of course, they never advertise the surgeries that went wrong. In some cases, the patients may not walk out of the surgery center at all.

Another young woman has tragically died while undergoing a so-called routine plastic surgery operation. Heather Meadows was a 29-year-old mother of two from West Virginia. She was looking to undergo a plastic surgery operation to take fat out of her tummy area, and inject it into her buttocks. This procedure is also known as the Brazilian butt-lift.

Ms. Meadows traveled with a friend down to Encore Plastic Surgery in Hialeah, Florida, a city near Miami. She was looking for a Brazilian butt-lift, which was described by the clinic as a combination of liposuction and skin graft, “to make the glutes look round and firm.”

At some point during the procedure, Meadows suffered medical complications. She was rushed to the hospital where she was pronounced dead. An autopsy later determined that she died from a fat embolism. The fat entered her bloodstream and blocked an artery. Her blood vessels were essentially clogged by the fat that was injected back into her buttocks to create a fuller appearance in her buttocks.

The clinic said they were working with the county health department to investigate the young mother's death. Meadows' mother was shocked to hear that her daughter had died while undergoing such a routine procedure. She said she plans to take legal action to investigate her daughter's death. Until then, her mother has to have her daughter's body sent home from Florida to West Virginia for burial.

Amanda Rogers accompanied Meadows to the procedure, it was something they decided to do together. They'd planned to go to Vanity Cosmetics in Miami but were instead told to go to Encore Plastic Surgery. “We assumed the pre-op meeting was going to be with the doctor,” said Rogers. “But when we got there, the pre-op only consisted of filling out paperwork, paying the rest of our money, and being weighed in. That was it.”

Rogers was waiting for her procedure when, instead, she was interrupted to find her friend was in trouble. A nurse told her that they were going to have to reschedule her appointment because there was an emergency.

A president of Encore Plastic Surgery, Ismael Labrador, was arrested by Miami-Dade police in 2007 after an investigation found that he was employing unlicensed doctors and allowing them to conduct plastic surgery procedures.

If you or a loved one has been injured due to a medical error, the Gilman & Bedigian team is fully equipped to handle the complex process of filing a medical malpractice claim. Our staff, including a physician and attorneys with decades of litigation experience, will focus on getting you compensation, so you can focus on healing and moving forward. Please do not hesitate to contact us today for a free consultation.

About the Author

Briggs Bedigian

H. Briggs Bedigian (“Briggs”) is a founding partner of Gilman & Bedigian, LLC.  Prior to forming Gilman & Bedigian, LLC, Briggs was a partner at Wais, Vogelstein and Bedigian, LLC, where he was the head of the firm's litigation practice.  Briggs' legal practice is focused on representing clients involved in medical malpractice and catastrophic personal injury cases. 

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