Hawaiian girl, 3, dies after dental procedure

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Finley Boyle

HONOLULU, Hawaii — Finley Boyle, a 3-year-old Hawaiian girl who suffered massive brain damage after undergoing a dental procedure last month, died Friday night, her family’s lawyer said Saturday.

The girl died with her relatives in attendance at Hospice Hawaii’s Kailua home, said the lawyer, L. Richard Fried Jr., of Cronin, Fried, Sekiya, Kekina & Fairbanks.

Her parents are suing a Kailua, Hawaii, dentist, alleging negligence and dangerous conduct.

The lawsuit, filed against Lilly Geyer and her practice, Island Dentistry for Children, alleges improper medications with incorrect dosages were administered to the girl on December 3, according to court documents filed this week.

“As a direct and proximate result of the medications administered to (Finley) by defendants, (Finley) suffered cardiac arrest during her dental procedure,” the lawsuit says.

It alleges that, as a further result of improper medications, Finley “suffered severe and permanent brain damage.”

Geyer and her attorney, John Nishimoto, did not respond to CNN’s requests for comment. The Island Dentistry website states it has been permanently closed and directs patients to an e-mail address.

The lawsuit, filed Monday in Hawaii’s First Circuit Court, alleges that Geyer had no plan in place to respond to medical emergencies, such as the one Finley suffered. It seeks unspecified damages.

Finley’s mother, Ashley Boyle, said she first took her daughter to the dentist in November, when she was told her daughter needed six fillings and four root canals, she said.

They returned in December to undergo the root canals, Boyle said.

The parents allege that Finley was sedated and left unmonitored for 26 minutes.

Finley was moved from a hospital to a hospice in late December.

Finley’s pediatric neurologist, Dr. Gregory Yen, said MRIs showed the girl suffered severe brain damage and that she was in a “persistent vegetative state.”


    • bri james

      my son had the same procedure when he was 3, except he had 7 root canals, and all his teeth capped. You keep your baby teeth for years, and these teeth at this age need to be fixed. My sons pediatric dentist were a older married couple that did it at a surgery center, with nurses and Drs on staff, and all went well, he is 14 now and all his adult teeth came in fine. I was amazed how many people asked me why we did this for his baby teeth, and I had to remind people how long you have these teeth. Thank God for our old “Cadillac Insurance plan” but even with that we had to check out several dentist as the 1st dentist price, even the insurance said was outrageous( We thought so too), and the 2nd dentist, who we used, was half the price. They were so good, they remained his dentist till middle school

  • Ashley

    My daughter had to have some dental work done on her baby teeth as well. I thought the same thing and discussed this with my dentist about why can’t we just wait for them to fall out. The reasoning he gave me was because if they were not given the attention they needed now the cavity could lead to some sort of infection with her gum and possibly affect her adult teeth. In the end I opted to just having her back teeth worked on but left the front teeth alone. They fall out much sooner.

    • bri james

      I wish that would have been my sons issue, when he was under 3 he was waking up in the night screaming, we were taking him too his doctor who couldn’t figure out what the problem was, finally figure out it was his teeth, We took him too a children’s dentist and his was extensive, 7 root canals and all his teeth capped, our insurance asked us to get another dentist price as hers was way out of line, and the 2nd dentist gave the same report but their price was more in line with our insurance.
      They did this at a surgery center, and he did just fine, He is in middle school now and his adult teeth are fine. This was not our only child, but was our only child with dental problems

  • Shirley

    There has been controversy over root canals for adults because bacteria can fester and cause more problems. Root canals are the biggest money makers for dentists. I would have gotten a second opinion concerning this root canal for a 3 year old. This is a prime example of why children should not be exposed to some treatments. I feel really badly for this family and hope the memories they have help them through these tough times. RIP little girl.

    • bri james

      my son at 3, got several opinions, his medical doctor said we had to do this, and our insurance wanted several prices, as the 1st dentist was so over priced, His was done at a surgery center and all went well, he is I middle school now and his adult teeth came in fine. He was our 4th child and we knew how to take care of teeth, his baby teeth just were not all that good and his doctor said he had to be in quite a bit of pain.
      If I hadn’t had this happen to one of my kids, I might not understand either, but your comment is generalizing small children’s heath issues when your not a expert and your not living with the child with dental problems

    • bri james

      happens a lot, my son had the same thing at 3, he had extensive problems. He is my youngest of 4 kids and none of the others had this problem, you keep you baby teeth for around 10 to 12 years. He actually had 7 root canals and all his teeth capped, he is in middle school now, and all his adult teeth came in fine

    • Mr. Papageorgio

      all of that dental work for a 3 year old? Sounds like the parents should be charged for negligence! I could understand a cavity or two but 6 fillings. Did that kid ever brush her teeth?

      • Justin Ludwig

        I wish someone like you would say something so stupid in front of me. Your a$$ wouldn’t be standing long. You must have the IQ of a three year old or maybe it never occurred to you that 3 year olds don’t and aren’t supposed to use toothpaste. Maybe it never occurred to you that some people are born with deficiencies where their teeth rot out. Maybe you need some sense beat into you.

      • Stephen Melton

        For Mr…cough…Justin Ludwig:

        Actually, where to start with your comment.
        Ok…first, there are toothpastes for 0-3, no fluoride in them, and its a pretty good idea to get your kids started early, but the poster you commented to might not be as ignorant as you (in fact, obviously isnt) ..and made a decent point given the information given in the medias portrayal of this incident.
        After going over and looking at your FB page, Im sure not too many folks here are worried about you and your threat of violence towards them…altho, they might suggest a good barber to you…and yes, Id do just that as I am now…
        As for the threats you made against the other poster…laughable. Incredibly hilarious. Please, if you are going to play keyboard commando, at least look the part. Fake it if you have to, but at least dont have all your personal information online for someone to come try to see if you actually are capable, or if you are just another poser..in this case, we chose latter. :)
        Curious…since you know so much about dental work…is that because your right tooth in fronts not right, or is that from someone else …how did you say..”beat(ing) some sense into you”?

    • bri james

      I have been there with my youngest, and its not easy to figure this out, took his medical Doctor a while to figure it out. Some kids at 2 to 3 are not talking all that much , he had a bit more than this girl had at 3 and the dentist did it at a surgery center. He is 14 now and all his adult teeth came in fine

      • Mr. Papageorgio

        Oh, Justin, if you were only smart. Every time you reply to me you make yourself sound really really stupid. From looking at your FB page you don’t just sound stupid. Is that your girlfriend or is that just who you pay to cover the fact you are a homo?

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