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Lap-Band patient death investigated by LAPD

Paula Rojeski, 55, died Sept. 8, 2011 following her procedure at the Valley Surgical Center in West Hills, also known as Woodlake Medical Center.

April 7, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
A police investigation is under way into the death of a local woman following Lap-Band surgery last fall.

Paula Rojeski, 55, died Sept. 8 after having surgery at the Valley Surgical Center in West Hills, a clinic associated with the recently discontinued 1-800-GET-THIN advertising campaign. Autopsy results have not been released.

The Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to Eyewitness News that their robbery-homicide division is handling the investigation into Rojeski's death.

Rojeski is one of five patients who died after surgery at 1-800-GET-THIN clinics. In a lawsuit, two former workers at the surgery center say Rojeski died because of a series of medical errors, including the anesthesiologist's alleged failure to turn on the oxygen tank before surgery.

In December, the Food and Drug Administration warned the clinics that their advertisements were misleading because they did not adequately disclose the risks of Lap-Band surgery.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.