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A Florida mom of three died last month after going into cardiac arrest on her plastic surgeon husband’s operating table.
The husband, Dr. Ben Brown, 40, of Restore Plastic Surgery, called 911 and began performing CPR on November 21, the Pansacola News Journal said, but Hillary Brown. 33, went into a coma with severe brain swelling from a lack of oxygen. Doctors took her off life support a week later.
The Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office and the District One Medical Examiner’s Officer are now investigating, trying to determine what led to the death.
“I interviewed the medical technician (name redacted) who advised the patient is Hillary E. Rogers Brown, who is currently Dr. Brown’s spouse,” a deputy wrote in a report from the 911 call. “Hillary Brown was in the process of several surgical procedures when she experienced several seizures and then went into cardiac arrest.”
The call notes suggested the doctor may have over-medicated the patient.
Hillary Brown had three children from a previous marriage, all between the ages of 4 and 8. The children are now living with their father. Ben Brown had two children from a previous marriage. It’s not clear where they are living.
Marty Ellington, Hillary Brown’s father, told USA Today that the plastic surgeon was out of the medication he usually used so tried something different on his wife.
“We want answers,” said Ellington. “We haven’t been given answers. If it’s a mistake, it was a mistake, but it doesn’t bring my daughter back, you know. I don’t want his money. I don’t want anything. All I want is an answer because I think that we owe that to my daughter.”
A public relations firm released a statement on behalf of Ben Brown’s family on Thursday complaining about “many mistruths circulating online and in the media.”
“Ben is completely devastated by the sudden loss of his loving wife Hillary, and is desperately trying to understand how to live one day, never mind a lifetime without her by his side,” the statement read.
The statement said the procedures he was performing were “minor and routine” and that all proper protocols were followed, including having additional staff present.
“Our lives have been permanently upended by the loss of Hillary and we will forever keep her in our hearts,” the statement said.
Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Jillian Durkin said in a statement that the death investigation is routine “when the death was unexpeted or the death occurs under unusual circumstances.”
“The cause and manner of death is pending the receipt of the autopsy protocol from the District One medical examiners office,” Durkin said. “The autopsy protocol typically takes several months as it usually is dependent on extensive laboratory and toxicology tests as well as the information gathered by our Major Crimes detectives concerning the circumstances of the death.”