CHICAGO, Sept. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The recent case of five-year old Amber Athwal is a reminder yet again of the dangers of dental sedation without the availability of adequate personnel and patient monitoring. Unfortunately, what happened to Amber is not an isolated event, as other pediatric deaths have recently occurred, tragically with 6 year-old Caleb Sears, as well as 9-year old Solomon Womack, 17-Year Old Mariah Edwards, and 17-year-old girl, Sydney Gallegher.
Under general anesthesia, Amber underwent dental surgery to extract some of her teeth. A lawsuit claims that Amber suffered "profound neurological injuries" after being deprived of oxygen, while recovering from the procedure.
Because of what happened to Amber under Dr. Mather's care, the Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA&C) permanently suspended single operator sedation - which is "simultaneously provide deep sedation or general anesthesia and dental treatment" - and requires the adoption of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) Continuum of Depth of Sedation in defining various levels of sedation.
ASA standards for basic anesthetic monitoring state, "During all anesthetics, the patient's oxygenation, ventilation, circulation and temperature shall be continually evaluated."
While Amber's oxygenation was monitored, according to a letter by Dr. Mather, her ventilation was not. ASA's standards for for basic anesthetic monitoring provide, "Every patient receiving general anesthesia shall have the adequacy of ventilation continually evaluated."
"Adequacy of ventilation is measured by capnography, which was not used to monitor Amber during her recovery," says Michael Wong, JD (Founder and Executive Director, Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety. "Had Amber been monitored with capnography, perhaps she would have suffered brain damage."
To read the complete article on Amber Athwal on the PPAHS blog, please click here.
About Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety
Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety is a non-profit 501(c)(3) whose mission is to promote safer clinical practices and standards for patients through collaboration among healthcare experts, professionals, scientific researchers, and others, in order to improve healthcare delivery. For more information, please go to www.ppahs.org.
SOURCE Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety