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Alexandra Medina Died From Cheap Plastic Surgery In The Dominican Republic — And Her Family Wants Answers

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an Who Died After Getting Cheap Plastic Surgery In The Dominican Republic

Medical tourism is quickly on the rise — but unfortunately, it doesn't always end well for those who choose to participate in it. The latest tragedy comes from a woman, originally from upstate New York, who went to get plastic surgery in the Dominican Republic, and died. She's the third woman to die from medical tourism procedures this year. Who is Alexandra Medina?

Here's what we know about this unfortunate tragedy. 

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1. She went to the Dominican Republic to get plastic surgery. 

Medical tourism is a term that encompasses all aspects of medical procedures — though it's most often associated with plastic surgery procedures. 

According to People Magazine, Alexandra Medina was one of many people who fell into the latter category — that is, she went to the Dominican Republic to get plastic surgery, not another type of medical procedure. 

"Alexandra Medina, 33, traveled to the Dominican Republic for a tummy tuck and liposuction after doctors in the U.S. refused to perform the surgeries, telling her that she needed to lose weight before undergoing any procedures. But Medina was undeterred, and contacted a Dominican surgeon, Dr. Félix Almánzar, through Facebook who agreed to the operations," reported the outlet.

Alexandra Medina went to the Dominican Republic to get plastic surgery. 

2. Alexandra Medina died on the operating table. 

After she got to the Dominican Republic to perform the risky procedure, Alexandra Medina suffered a fatty embolism, and died on the operating table, according to The Insider.

"Dr. Félix Almánzar pulled out at the last minute and had another doctor take over because he was "scared" after the deaths of the two other patients. She later died of a pulmonary embolism," reported the outlet.

Alexandra Medina died on the operating table, according to her family. 

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3. The clinic was questionable, at best. 

According to PIX 11, the clinic that Alexandra Medina went to had previously been shut down due to their engagement in improper procedures. 

"Medina had concerns after she arrived and called her mom. Toro said there were a number of red flags: the clinic was dirty; Medina had to pay the surgeon right there and they wheeled her in at 8:30 p.m. Dr. Felix Almanzar, a plastic surgeon, was supposed to perform the procedure. Medina's sister, Maxine David, says he didn't do the tummy tuck himself. Over the objections of her mother, she went to a clinic where two patients have already died. The clinic where those patients and Medina had procedures has been shut down since Medina's death last week," reported the outlet.

There were already some red flags regarding the procedure, according to Alexandra Medina's family.

4. Now, Alexandra Medina's family is demanding answers. 

According to the New York Daily News, while Dominican authorities have said they are opening an investigation into what happened to Alexandra Medina, her family members say it's not enough, and they want to know what happened and why. 

"Family members have been using a Facebook page to demand justice for Medina, alert travelers about the incident and warn them about Dr. Felix Almanzar, with whom Medina was reportedly scheduled to have surgery, and his associates. The doctor could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday afternoon," reported the outlet. "U.S. authorities have issued several warnings in recent years about the dangers of traveling to the Dominican Republic for cheaper plastic surgeries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in November 2017 that more than 50 cases had been confirmed of U.S. residents contracting an infection following a cosmetic procedure in that country."

Our thoughts are with Alexandra Medina's family during this difficult time. 

Alexandra Medina's family wants answers. 

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, and photographer whose work has appeared in People, Teen Vogue, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and more. She is also the author of The Uprising series. For more information about Bernadette Giacomazzo, click here.