A 3-year-old girl who suffered massive brain damage after undergoing
dental procedures on multiple teeth last month has died, an attorney for
her family said Saturday.
The child's family has filed a
malpractice suit against the Kailua, Hawaii, dentist who performed the
procedures, and that suit will be amended to include wrongful death,
Rick Fried, attorney for the family of Finley Boyle, said in confirming
Finley died at Hospice Hawaii at 8:47 p.m. Friday with her family at her side, hospice President Kenneth Zeri said.
parents, Ashley and Evan Boyle, filed the lawsuit last week against
dentist Lilly Geyer and unidentified staff members at Island Dentistry
for Children. The suit seeks unspecified damages.
The case isn't
dissimilar from that of 13-year-old Jahi McMath, who had surgery to
remove her tonsils and treat other tissue to improve her breathing.
While in the recovery room she began hemorrhaging, suffered cardiac
arrest and lapsed into a coma. The girl, declared brain-dead by
physicians at Children's Hospital Oakland, remains on life support.Fried
said that the child was diagnosed by the dentist and scheduled for
procedures on 10 teeth, including root canals on four teeth and fillings
in the others.
The toddler in Hawaii went into a coma after the procedure Dec. 3 and
was later diagnosed as in "a persistent vegetative state,'' Fried said.
suit alleges the dental practice made at least four critical errors in
the case including misdiagnosis, overmedication and inadequate
monitoring and resuscitation of the patient.
Fried said examination by another dentist later determined that most of the dental work was unnecessary.
suit charges the dentist used a combination of three drugs, all central
nervous system depressants, and that the combination enhanced the
strength of each without appropriate adjustments in dosage. Fried said
an excessive dose of at least one of the drugs was administered.
said medical records indicate that after respiratory and oxygen levels
in the child were measured early in the procedure, no further
measurements were taken for more than 26 minutes.
"There was no adequate monitoring of the child's respirations and oxygen levels during the procedure,'' Fried said.
Ashley Boyle, a registered nurse, was in the dental waiting room and
became aware there were problems only when emergency responders arrived.
The staff also summoned a pediatrician down the hall, Fried said.
website of Geyer's dental practice in Kailua, on the island of Oahu,
says it is closed and refers inquiries to an e-mail address. She did not
respond to a request for comment.
Her attorney, John Nishimoto, declined comment but called the allegations "unproven.''
this matter is now the subject of a pending lawsuit, it would be
inappropriate for me to comment on any of the unproven allegations that
have been reported to the media. Therefore, I cannot comment at this
time,'' Nishimoto said in an e-mailed statement.
Fried said the child was placed in the hospice center a week ago.
"We were all hoping,'' Ashley Boyle told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. "Even the doctors are in tears.''
case isn't dissimilar from that of 13-year-old Jahi McMath, who had
surgery to remove her tonsils and treat other tissue to improve her
breathing. While in the recovery room she began hemorrhaging, suffered
cardiac arrest and lapsed into a coma. The girl, declared brain-dead by
physicians at Children's Hospital Oakland, remains on life support.