The runner-up to one of Brazil’s largest beauty pageants has reportedly died after getting cosmetic surgery to remove wrinkles on her face.
According to the Daily Mail, model Raquel Santos of Rio de Janeiro suffered a heart attack after having fillers injected into her face on Monday.
The 28-year-old, who was a finalist in the popular Musa do Brasil competition in December, reportedly used an illegal horse medicine which she injected daily before workouts as a performance enhancer. Police are investigating if it might have contributed to her death.
Police reportedly interrupted Santos’ funeral and removed the body for further examination after claims the model’s death certificate had been wrongly completed, the Daily Mail reported.
The Potenay drug, which contains a cardio-respiratory stimulant, is being increasingly used in Brazil by bodybuilders for muscle gain.
According to friends, the mother of two was allegedly terrified of dying during plastic surgery but was a “slave of vanity” so she did “every procedure imaginable.”
“She was very concerned about her looks,” her friend Debora Azevedo told Brazil’s G1 website, according to the Daily Mail. “She would go off and have procedures without telling her friends so we wouldn’t fight with her.”
She continued: “She was terrified of dying during surgery. But she did it anyway, that was how much she was obsessed with looking good. And she did every aesthetic procedure imaginable, from artificial tans to lymphatic drainage.”
Azevedo said her friend was “so vain” and worked out religiously.
“She was as addicted to working out as she was to plastic surgery,” she added.
Wagner Moraes, the plastic surgeon who did Santos’ surgery, insisted that the procedure was not the cause of her death.
'It was a simple procedure which lasted two minutes,” he said. “The big problem is that she was already suffering health complications, applying Potenay to her body every day, including on the day of the surgery.'