A New York City family is searching for answers after 27-year-old Rosemary Abreu suddenly died during a routine procedure at a Bronx hospital.
Abreu, a mom of two, had gone in for surgery at Lincoln Hospital on Sept. 20 to drain a cyst in her thigh, expecting to be home soon after. But, according to the lawsuit filed by her family, she went into cardiac arrest on the operating table, had a stroke and then died the next day.
“They killed my daughter,” Abreu’s mother, Dorah Restituyo said through tears at a press conference held Friday. “They killed her; I don’t know why. I don’t know what happened to my daughter.”
Restituyo said that before the surgery her daughter said she was “coming back right away.” She claims that she was not made aware that Abreu had died until she came to the hospital to check on her daughter.
“When I get there, I ask the doctors, ‘What happened to Rosemary?’ and they say, ‘I don’t know. I don’t know.’ Everybody said, ‘I don’t know what happened to her,’ ” Restituyo said.
The family announced Friday that they are filing a $50 million lawsuit against Lincoln Hospital and the NYC Heath + Hospitals health system.
“We believe the cause of death was either the improper administration of anesthesia or the improper monitoring, but this should not be happening in our city hospitals!” their attorney, Sanford Rubenstein, said.
Autopsy results are still pending. PEOPLE has contacted the hospital for comment, but the hospital told WABC that they “will vigorously investigate the matter and review our practices.”
Abreu worked for the NYC Department of Education, and leaves behind her two daughters, ages 9 and 2.
“It’s very hard for me to explain to my granddaughters that their mother is not coming back,” Restituyo said. “I don’t imagine my life after that day, but I have to [live] for my granddaughters.”