A 19-year-old Colorado woman who was left permanently brain damaged after breast augmentation surgery has died, her family said.
Emmalyn Nguyen, of Thornton, went for breast implant surgery on Aug. 1, 2019. According to the lawsuit filed by her family against Dr. Geoffrey Kim, Nguyen, who was 18 at the time, wasn’t monitored for the first 15 minutes after being administered anesthesia.
“Emmalyn’s parents and siblings are heartbroken,” attorney David Woodruff said, according to CBS Denver. “This turn of events was sadly unexpected.”
Nguyen spent the last 14 months of her life in a coma and died Oct. 4, WKRG reported.
Nguyen went into cardiac arrest but Kim performed CPR and stabilized her. She went into cardiac arrest for a second time and was stabilized again, but no one called 911 for five hours even though she was “neurologically unresponsive,” the suit says.
The family sued Kim and nurse anesthetist Rex Meeker for negligence.
Meeker called 911 and Nguyen was taken to Littleton Adventist Hospital and stayed there for 22 days. She didn’t show signs of recovery from brain damage and was transferred to Vibra Hospital of Denver.
Lynn Fam told CBS4 that she had been “misled” about what was happening to her daughter during the procedure. She said that Dr. Kim told her, ”Everything went fine, the only thing is we didn’t proceed with the procedure because her heart rate dropped but she is fine. He said everything is fine, Emmalyn is fine, everything is good. She’s young, she’s healthy, she’ll be okay, it’s just taking her long to wake up.”
Nguyen’s parents told Fox 31 that their daughter “wanted to improve her self-image” by getting implants.
Meeker was sued for a similar case in 2009 after he served as the nurse anesthetist for Paula Harty’s breast implant surgery, according to reports. Harty died after she suffered brain damage during the procedure. Her husband sued and the case was settled in 2012, according to Fox 31.