Woman, 21, dies hours after botched nose job leaves her with lungs full of blood

A 21-year-old woman has tragically died after her nose job went horribly wrong, leaving her struggling to breath.

Karen Julieth Cárdenas Uribe sadly passed when her rhinoplasty operation left her lungs ‘full of blood’.

The psychology student from Colombia fell unconscious shortly after returning home from the surgery.

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Her family managed to revive her and rush her to the hospital but Karen suffered several cardiac arrests.

She continued to lose consciousness and was struggling to breath while at the hospital so doctors were forced to incubate her.

The young woman’s brother said she was fit and healthy before going under the knife on January 29.

He said: “She was a healthy woman, she never had any serious health problems and was in good physical shape."

The brother said scans revealed Karen had a considerable amount of blood in her lungs, trachea, and oesophagus, preventing her from breathing.

“They did what they could, but after six cardiac arrests she passed away," he added.

Her family plan to file a complaint with the Public Prosecutors Office to uncover if there were any medical negligence in Karen's care.

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According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, nose reshaping was the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure in 2020, with 352,555 procedures performed in the US.

In the UK, rhinoplasties are still the sixth most popular cosmetic surgery for women, says the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS).

However, the number of rhinoplasties performed in the UK has been dropping steadily for a decade, from 4,878 in 2013 to just 1,330 last year.

This comes as many women are turning to safer, and often cheaper nose job alternatives.

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A “nonsurgical rhinoplasty” which is done using fillers, is available for less than £300 and can take just 10 minutes.

While those getting a surgical nose job often have to fork out upwards of £7000, stay in hospital for a couple of nights following the procedure and involve several health risks.

Nose jobs are not available on the NHS if done for cosmetic reasons, but may be provided on the NHS if it's needed to help you breathe.

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Nose reshaping is a complex operation, and like any operation, it brings with it some health risks.

According to the NHS, Nose reshaping surgery can occasionally result in:

  • permanent breathing difficulty
  • damage to the cartilage wall between your nostrils
  • an altered sense of smell
  • heavy nosebleeds

Any type of operation also carries a small risk of:

  • excessive bleeding
  • a blood clot in a vein
  • infection
  • an allergic reaction to the anaesthetic

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