A weight-loss product that was being marketed on social media is believed to have been a major factor in the death of a Nuevo León woman.
Lucero Priscila Garza Campos, 24, was taken off a ventilator Saturday night after doctors declared she was brain dead.
Garza was suffering from severe headaches when she was admitted Monday to a private medical facility in Monterrey, where she was diagnosed with cerebral edema. On Wednesday she suffered cardiorespiratory arrest and went into a coma from which she never recovered.
During the past month Garza had been taking Avitia Cobrax, a weight-loss product sold on Facebook through a page that has since been removed.
The physicians who cared for Garza agreed that the product had been a major factor in the rapid deterioration of her health and her death.
It appears that Avitia Cobrax was previously sold under the brand names Thermatrim and Pura Alegría, which were both declared illegal by the health protection agency Cofepris.
The agency said it will determine whether Avitia Cobrax is the same product being offered under a new name and identify where it is being produced and distributed.
It said the manufacturers operate by changing their location and renaming the product so they can continue selling their “garbage.”
The products cause excessive sweating, so their vendors recommend drinking lots of water. What they don’t warn customers is that the electrolytes lost in sweating are not easily replenished by simply drinking water.
Many consumers of the products have reported fainting, hot flashes, trouble resting, headaches, nausea and a general state of nervousness.
A cousin of Garza urged anyone consider taking weight loss products obtain medical advice first.
Information about Garza’s case has been widely shared on Facebook, where commenters have shared prayers and health advice alike. Marco Antonio González, Garza’s husband, told the newspaper Reforma that “[social] networks have been the best . . . [people] have sent many prayers, lots of good vibes . . . everything is to give [Garza] more light.”
The victim’s wish to lose weight followed a pregnancy last year that left her slightly overweight. So she spent 1,200 pesos to purchase Avitia Cobrax, advertised as using 100% natural products to burn off fat, and succeeded in losing seven kilograms in just 10 days.
She leaves her husband and a one-year-old daughter.