Mother Demands Answers After 4-Year-Old Dies During Dentist Visit

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A heartbroken Vancouver mother is still looking for answers after her four-year-old son died Friday after what should have been a completely ordinary visit to the dentist.

According to KATU Thmeka Curry says she took her son, Mykel, to Must Love Kids Pediatric Dentistry in Vancouver on Friday. It was just an ordinary dental visit, but Curry says that on Mykel’s previous visit he’d been unhappy about the dentist’s chair and had kicked and screamed and refused to keep his mouth open, so this time she says the dentist suggested having the anesthesiologist put him under for the procedure.

Curry says that Mykel had been sedated with a nitrous oxide mask on previous appointments, but this time he was given an injection to put him to sleep. After the dentist finished, she started to worry that Mykel didn’t wake up right away. He was still breathing, but she says she was worried, and she says the anesthesiologist said it might take a while for him to wake up. Curry says the anesthesiologist told her that he gave him “just a little extra dosage” to make sure he didn’t wake up mid-exam, but that everything was OK.

Everything was not OK. That’s when office staff started CPR and called 911. Mykel was rushed to the hospital, but the four-year-old died.

Vancouver police say there’s not currently a criminal investigation going on. A medical examiner will determine a cause of death, and Curry was apparently told that a toxicology report won’t be available for six to eight weeks. That’s awful. Her four-year-old son just died, and now she’s been told she has to wait six to eight weeks to find out if there will even be a criminal investigation. His whole family must be going through hell.

The dentistry issued a statement of sympathy for Mykel and his parents and said that it would be premature to comment on any specifics until outside medical experts finish their review, but they said they have used general anesthesia more than 1,900 times for pediatric patients in the last three and a half years without incident, and that they contract with a board-certified anesthesiologist who follows all protocols including pre-operative check and approval by the child’s primary care physician before putting the child under anesthesia.