A now-closed med spa in Maryland has been sued by the estate of a former customer who underwent liposuction surgery at the med spa in 2012 and died six days later as a result of invasive Group A Streptococcus infection. The customer was placed on life support for three days before she died. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (“Department”) closed the med spa two days after the customer’s death, following the Department’s receipt of three complaints involving customers of the med spa developing infections after having liposuction at the facility.
The lawsuit for the wrongful death of the former customer followed two other lawsuits filed against the same med spa earlier last month. An investigation undertaken by the Department in 2012 found that all three customers had their liposuction procedures between mid-August and mid-September 2012. The investigation found that members of the team that performed the liposuction procedure did not wear gloves, that some of the nurses were not licensed in Maryland, the med spa facility had visibly dirty equipment, and the med spa’s areas were not separated between clean and dirty areas for sterilization. It was also determined that the doctor who performed the customer’s liposuction had a skin infection that he self-treated one month before he performed the procedure on the customer.
While the Baltimore-area med spa location is closed, the Pennsylvania-headquartered company that operated the med spa has other locations in Delaware and Pennsylvania.
The Baltimore wrongful death case is captioned Michele Thompson v. Daniel Francis, D.O., et al., Circuit Court for Baltimore City, Case No. 24C14006080.
The Department reported in 2012 that an average of 189 cases of invasive Group A Streptococcus (“GAS”) infections were reported in Maryland over the past five years and that between 9,000 and 11,500 cases of invasive GAS occur in the United States annually, which result in 1,000 to 1,800 deaths yearly.
GAS are most often found on the skin and in the throat. GAS is spread by direct contact with mucus from the nose or throat of infected individuals, by contact with infected surfaces, or through contact with sores on the skin or with infected wounds. GAS is described as “invasive” when it is found in blood, muscle, or the lungs and can be severe and life-threatening. Some people with GAS may not have symptoms and are referred to as “carriers.”
Symptoms of GAS may include fever, flu-like symptoms, redness at the wound site, abrupt onset or localized or generalized severe pain and swelling that is often rapidly increasing, and progressive dizziness, weakness, and confusion.
If you or a family member may have been injured as a result of a procedure performed at a med spa, outpatient clinic, or surgical center in the United States, you should promptly consult with a local medical malpractice attorney in your U.S. state who may investigate your possible medical negligence claim for you and represent you in a claim for damages, if appropriate.
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