Illegal Cosmetic Surgery Leads to Patient’s Death

Samuel E. Pondrom | 4.10.17

On Tuesday, March 28, 2017, a Dallas woman was convicted of murder for the death of a patient due to her practicing medicine without a license. The woman, Denise “Wee Wee” Ross, injected industrial-grade silicon into the buttocks of a patient in order to enhance that patient’s buttocks.  Ms. Ross was known to perform this service for women despite the fact that she had no medical training, improper facilities, and used filler not for intended for the human body.  In fact, the service had become locally known as the “Wee Wee Booty.”

However, on February 19, 2015 when Ms. Ross injected a patient who had requested buttocks injections she botched the procedure causing silicon to travel through the patient’s veins into her lungs.  The client eventually succumbed to pulmonary embolism and died.  At trial, a medical examiner testified that had Ms. Ross taken her client to the hospital, she could have survived.  Instead, she died in the back room of a Deep Ellum beauty salon.

This shocking death highlights the importance of medical spas and cosmetic surgery practices knowing and complying with the laws and regulations that apply to their work.  Moreover, the acts of a bad actor such as Ms. Ross unfortunately result in increased scrutiny for purveyors of aesthetic and cosmetic treatments, even when those services are offered by properly licensed persons in appropriate facilities.

If you have any questions on health care regulatory compliance, please contact Jay D. Reyero (jreyero@byrdadatto.com) or Bradford E. Adatto (badatto@byrdadatto.com).