Dental Procedure Turns Tragic for Two-Year-Old PatientJanuary 30, 2019
Kool Smiles is a privately held dental company that provides a range of dental services for low-income families. From regular cleanings and routine X-rays to more involved procedures like roots canals and crowns, Kool Smiles claims that they offer high quality dental services at a low cost families can afford. When the family of a two-year-old patient brought their son to Kool Smiles for a check-up, they trusted the dentists when they were told that the boy needed multiple pulpotomies, or baby root canals, which would require anesthesia. Unfortunately, things took a tragic turn during the procedure, and the boy died as a result of a severe lack of oxygen to the brain.
The parents of the child filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Kool Smiles. According to the lawsuit, the boy’s mother was extremely concerned when she noticed the heart rate monitor he was hooked up to did not show a pulse. Initially, the staff claimed that it was due to a faulty machine and that nothing was wrong with the boy. However, when the boy’s mother alerted the dentist that his chest was not moving, the nurse involved with the procedure immediately called 911.
Sadly, the boy was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at the hospital. According to the medical report, the official cause of death was severe hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. The details of the lawsuit state that the doctors sent the boy to a recovery room and was left alone while he was still unconscious. He was allegedly hooked up to an oxygen tank that was either empty or not functioning properly. This caused the lack of oxygen to the brain.
Fatal Procedure was Medically Unnecessary
According to the lawsuit, the Justice Department claimed that Kool Smiles had a pattern of recommending expensive procedures that were not necessary, including multiple medically unnecessary pulpotomies. In addition, Kool Smiles allegedly pressured and incentivized dentists to meet production goals. Those who were deemed unproductive were disciplined and those who met the production goals were awarded cash bonuses based on the revenue the costly procedures generated. U.S. Attorney John H. Durham for the District of Connecticut said that this case was particularly egregious because the company exploited needy children for financial gain.
The lawsuit also stated that there were other, far less expensive and less invasive treatment options that the dentists could have recommended to treat the boy’s cavities, including $25 silver diamine fluoride. The boy’s family is devastated by the senseless tragedy and decided to pursue legal action against Kool Smiles to prevent such careless and reckless behavior from affecting other families.
Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for Victims of Medical Negligence
If your health and safety was seriously jeopardized while under the care of a healthcare professional, including a dentist, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. We will protect your legal rights and secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve for your injuries. We will not stop fighting for you until justice has been served. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
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