Reporting Meghan McCorkell
TIMONIUM, Md. (WJZ) — A deadly infection shut down a Timonium cosmetic surgery center. Three people were sickened, one of them fatally, after undergoing a liposuction procedure. Now her family is speaking out to WJZ.
Meghan McCorkell has their heartbreaking story.
The woman who died was a 59-year-old nurse who dedicated her life to helping others. Now her family wants answers about how she died.
Three patients at Monarch Medspa were all sickened by the same dangerous infection. A 59-year-old Baltimore County woman went in for liposuction and died six days later.
“We are completely devastated. We are wrecked,” said the victim’s brother.
The brother–who didn’t want his sister identified–tells WJZ her condition deteriorated rapidly.
“This is incredible. This is terrible. This is awful, horrific, and something has to be done to stop this from happening,” he said.
Now the Baltimore County Health Department has shut down the medspa.
“You need to stop everything and try to figure out what the origins of it is and then clean that up,” said Dr. Gregory Branch, Baltimore County Health Department.
Plastic surgeon Dr. Ronald Schuster says infections are rare but can be dangerous.
“Although liposuction is performed through very small incisions, the area underneath of the skin is very large so it can spread very easily and quickly,” Schuster said.
Monarch Medspa released a statement to WJZ saying in part, “The suspected infections are a new development and their possible origins are being carefully investigated.”
The statement says, “Monarch’s primary concern is for the safety and well-being of all our patients and we extend our deepest sympathy to the deceased patient’s family.”
The victim’s brother says sympathy isn’t enough.
“I’d like to see all of the clinics shut down. I’d like to see a thorough and complete investigation of the entire operation,” he said.
That investigation is now underway.
Health officials are telling anyone who had a procedure at Monarch and is having unusual symptoms to contact their doctor, then contact the Board of Health.
The county health department says Monarch Medspa has cooperated with the investigation.