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Parents accuse Hawaii dentist of leaving daughter, 3, with brain damage

By Khushbu Shah and Chelsea J. Carter , CNN updated 9:09 PM EST, Fri January 3, 2014

(CNN) — The parents of a 3-year-old in a “vegetative state” are suing a Kailua, Hawaii, dentist, alleging negligence and dangerous conduct that left the girl with massive, irreversible brain damage. The lawsuit filed against Lilly Geyer and her practice, Island Dentistry for Children, alleges improper medications with incorrect dosages were administered to Finley Boyle on December 3, 2013, 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 said. It also alleges that as a further result of administering improper medications, Finley “suffered severe and permanent brain damage.”

Geyer and Geyer’s attorney, John Nishimoto, did not respond to repeated requests by CNN 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, also alleges Geyer did not have a plan or procedures 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 to the dentist 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.

“She will probably not be with us much longer,” Boyle said. Finley’s pediatric neurologist, Dr. Gregory Yen, said the girl has been in a “persistent vegetative state” since she was brought to him a month ago.

Finley has undergone four MRIs on her brain, which have shown severe damage, the doctor said. It is difficult to say how long Finley will be alive, Yen said.

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