Mother who reportedly died in Dominican Republic from cosmetic surgery ignored 'red flags'

Alexandra Medina, a mother from Westchester, N.Y. reportedly died during a cosmetic procedure in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Alexandra Medina, a mother from Westchester, N.Y. reportedly died during a cosmetic procedure in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (Photo: Getty Images)

A cosmetic surgery procedure performed in the Dominican Republic has claimed a third victim, who allegedly ignored “red flags” from the medical clinic.

Alexandra Medina, 33, of Westchester, N.Y., reportedly died during a tummy tuck and liposuction operation at Doctor Urenea Arias clinic in Santo Domingo on the Fourth of July. Her cause of death was embolism, according to Spanish website Noticias Sin, and she leaves behind a husband and 14-year-old son.

A family Facebook page called “We Want Justice for Alexandra” details the mother’s alleged final moments and accuses the clinic of malpractice. “I urge you not to do anything like this,” Medina’s mother Kanny Toro said in a video, appearing with her daughter and a male family member. “God gave you a body for a reason and keep it that way. You’re beautiful the way you are.”

According to Toro, Medina texted her on Wednesday, saying the doctor wanted to be paid upfront for the procedure. “That didn’t make sense,” said Toro. “A lot of red flags happened and she wasn’t listening to them.” Surgeon Dr. Felix Almanzar also had poor online reviews, which her daughter dismissed.

The surgery was scheduled at a hospital but at the last minute it was moved to the Urenea Arias clinic, says Toro. The Facebook page shows text messages allegedly between Toro and a clinic employee (written in Spanish), revealing that Toro demanded an update on her daughter. “She's awake?” Toro reportedly wrote in one message. “Please let me see her.” Later adding, “I called the police.”

“They are criminals,” Toro said in the video of the surgeons. “...You don’t like your fat? Go to the gym. Workout. Sacrifice some food. Don’t do any body procedures on you because there’s always a risk...I urge you, I beg you, don’t do this.”

“It’s a dark lucrative business,” Toro added of cosmetic surgery practices in the Dominican Republic. “...That’s all they want is money. They don’t care about lives.”

On Tuesday, the family wrote on Facebook that Dr. Almanzar had asked an obstetrician to oversee Medina’s operation.

Toro says police in Santa Domingo are not proactive but that the FBI has been contacted. According to News 12 Westchester, the minister of health in the Dominican Republic is investigating the clinic. Dr. Almanzar did not return an interview request from Yahoo Lifestyle.

Last month, an Alabama mother named Alicia Renette Williams died following a Brazilian butt lift, liposuction, and a tummy tuck in the Dominican Republic. Also in June, a man from New York named Manuel Jose Nunez reportedly died at the Caribbean Plastic Surgery Clinic in Santo Domingo.

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