Miami Woman Dies After Tummy Tuck Goes Wrong

A 32-year-old Florida woman has died after undergoing a tummy tuck procedure in Miami. What was supposed to be a routine operation for the young mother turned into a tragedy for the whole family.

As reported by NBC Miami, Maria Christian went into cardiac arrest towards the end of her surgery at Vanity Cosmetic Surgery and was unable to be revived in the emergency room. 


According to Vanity Cosmetic Surgery, the patient was deemed to be in good health at the time of her operation. She had also undergone two procedures in the past in the same clinic—most recently in January when she had a Brazilian Butt Lift.

Related: 21 Women Infected With Dangerous Bacteria From Medical Tourism Procedures

This time, Christian was treated by a new surgeon—Dr. Camille Chavez. “They were trying to tell her, she’s really good. Just do it with her. She’s really good,” Christian’s sister Carolina Flor said. The clinic released a statement stating that Dr. Chavez had more than “30 years of experience specializing in microsurgery, trauma surgery, craniofacial surgery, and cosmetic surgery.” From our research, we were not able to find any board certification credentials for Dr. Chavez. 

NBC investigators reported that there have been two other cases of patient deaths at other centers operated by the same owners, including Heather Meadows, who died in May undergoing a Brazilian Butt Lift.

Christian’s case is still being investigated and the medical examiner has not released the exact cause of death.

“Any death from any incident is unfortunate, especially from an elected procedure,” says La Jolla, CA, plastic surgeon Robert Singer, MD. “We don’t have enough information in this case to know what happened. But overall, the published statistic of a death in the hands of a board-certified surgeon and performed in an accredited facility with an appropriate anesthesia provider is one in 55,000 procedures.”

“The fact is, complication and disaster can happen in anyone’s hands,” adds Dr. Singer. But to minimize the risk of complications, in choosing a plastics surgeon, he recommends finding one that is ideally a Diplomate of the American Board of Plastic Surgery and a member of American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery or the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. 

1 Comment
  • Barry Friedberg MD
    Posted on

    Without further details, it is likely this death was anesthesia, not surgery, related. Protect yourself with critically important information and get your free, no obligation copy of 'Getting Over Going Under, 5 things you MUST know before anesthesia' from the non-profit Goldilocks foundation.

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