The lure of cheap beauty is killing people. In America, it costs an arm and a leg to fix your boobs and butt. A short plane ride to the Dominican Republic can mean a much cheaper price on cosmetic surgeries. But there are risks involved that some people are not making it home from.
The New York Daily News tells the tale of one woman, Beverly Brignoni, who flew to Santo Domingo for a tummy tuck. She died on the operating table. Her boyfriend had flown down with her and was in a waiting room when he was given the horrible news. The cause of death was a coronary embolism.
The hospital where Brignoni had her procedure was shut down after her death when officials from the Ministry of Health inspected it and found bacteria and violations of bio-sanitary regulations.
The Centers for Disease Control has issued a warning about the dangers of cosmetic surgeries in the Dominican Republic. The cause is listed as “rapidly growing nontuberculous mycobacterial (RG-NTM) surgical-site infections … exhibiting a high degree of antibiotic resistance”.
The CDC further recommended:
CDC advises all persons planning to receive surgical care outside the United States to verify that the health-care provider and facility they are considering using are licensed and accredited by an internationally recognized accreditation organization before proceeding. These findings indicate that health-care providers consider RG-NTM among patients with a history of cosmetic surgery in the Dominican Republic who also have a surgical-site infection that fails to respond to standard therapy.
The CDC noted 19 women in five states who had been infected in this manner.
Traveling outside the United States for health care is called “medical tourism”. There are risks involved, including poor communication due to language differences, counterfeit medication, poorly screened blood supply, antibiotic resistant bacteria, and the risks of flying after surgery.
The CDC reports on this and makes recommendations on their website.
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