The family of an 18-year-old who suffered brain damage during breast augmentation have filed a lawsuit.
The family members of Emmalyn Nguyen, who suffered cardiac arrest during breast augmentation and is now brain damaged, have filed a lawsuit against her plastic surgeon and nurse anesthesiologist.
Nguyen, 18, underwent breast implant surgery performed by Dr. Geofrey Kim on Aug. 1.
“I was fine with it,” said Nguyen’s mother, Lynn Fam. “To us, it felt safe. We didn’t think anything like this was going to happen to our daughter.”
The lawsuit alleges that Nguyen was left unattended for 15 minutes after she was given anesthesia at 2 p.m. by certified nurse anesthesiologist Rex Meeker.
The suit adds that Nguyen went into cardiac arrest twice and became neurologically unresponsive. Meeker finally called 911 at 7:35 p.m. and she was taken to the hospital.
“When an entire team of healthcare providers realizes she’s in cardiac arrest, they perform CPR on her, then they don’t call 911 for five and a half hours, that is unconscionable,” said the family’s attorney, David Woodruff.
Lynn Fam said she had a weird feeling because the two-hour-long procedure lasted for much longer than scheduled. She said staff members misled her about what was happening. She also claims that Dr. Kim told her everything was fine with her daughter.
“Everything went fine. The only thing is we didn’t proceed with the procedure because her heart rate dropped but she is fine,” Fam told the news outlet of the doctor. “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.”
Nyugen stayed in the hospital for 22 days before being taken to a rehab facility. She remains there now in a minimally conscious state. She can’t eat, talk, walk or take care of herself.
“To me, it’s a miracle she pulled through all that and she is still fighting this. I don’t know how they can sleep at night knowing they did this to her,” Fam told KCNC. “They ruined Emmalyn’s life — not just hers but all of ours.”
Fam says the lawsuit could help answer what truly happened to Nyugen.