Man dies following traditional Thai massage in Pattaya

Photo: Creative Commons
Photo: Creative Commons

The family of a Thai man, who died while receiving a traditional massage in Pattaya, said today that they will not press charges against the 72-year-old proprietor who gave the massage and that they hope the man’s tragic death will become a cautionary tale to others.

Chanda Sakherm, 32, in a broadcast interview this morning, spoke of the massage that allegedly killed her husband, 37-year-old Sombat Suansak. Chandra said the family was on vacation at the Pattaya Floating Market on Oct. 13 when they stopped by a herbal product shop where they met Sakao Weeranan, 72, the shopkeeper who offered a massage so Sombat could try their products.

Sakao was not a certified masseuse, and her job was to assist customers.

“The grandma [shopkeeper] said that she could give a massage, and my husband loved massages, so he agreed. After about a half an hour, he got up and said he couldn’t breathe and told the grandma to stop,” Chandra said.

The woman said that her husband was in good health, but had received muscle injuries while playing football just a week before their vacation.

After Sombat collapsed to the floor, ambulances were called, and rescuers performed CPR. However, he died five days later (Oct. 18) due to blood clots in his lung.

The shopkeeper, Sakao Weeranan, 72, remains stressed about the incident and has ended up with high blood pressure, according to her granddaughter, Patchsinee, 27.

Patchsinee told Morning News that the family only their grandmother a job at the shop so she would have activities to do during the day and not have to stay home by herself.

Patchsinee said that her grandmother only applied herbal compresses to Sombat’s leg and rubbed oil on him to help with muscle soreness and that she did not give him a full body massage.

Although Sombat’s family will not press charges, they said they’re in talks with the herbal product shop for compensation.

While there is yet no clear evidence that the massage affected the man’s pre-existing blood clots, the family says they hope the story will be a lesson to other businesses to not allow untrained employees to give customers massages.



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