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4-Year-Old Autistic Boy Killed During Routine Dental Procedure

Mykel Peterson, a four-year-old boy with autism, died after being given an anesthetic during a routine dental procedure.

Peterson was having a cavity filled at Must Love Kids Pediatric Dentistry in Vancouver, Canada on Friday, March 10, when the complications took place.

Thmeka Curry, Peterson’s mother, said the dentist was repairing a previous treatment and had chosen to sedate Peterson because he was ‘agitated’ during his previous visit.

Via NBC:

Mykel Peterson was put under with anesthesia to fill a cavity, but never woke up. The dental office where it happened, Must Love Kids, was closed Monday. An employee who came to the door, told KGW it was out of support for employees and the boy’s family after what happened Friday.

The Washington State Dept. of Health says it’s now reviewing the case to decide if they’ll open an investigation. The Clark County Medical Examiner says the cause of death is pending until toxicology results are finalized in 6-8 weeks.

Mykel had been slightly sedated before using a nitrous oxide mask, but Friday, his mother says Mykel got a shot of the common anesthesia drug Ketamine to put him totally under while the dentist looked at whether he needed fillings or a crown. The procedure went well, it’s what happened afterward that’s changed her life.

Minutes ticked by, and Curry says he was breathing. Then he wasn’t. CPR started, 911 was called and Mykel was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Peterson’s death is now being investigated by the Clark County Medical Examiner, which will finalize toxicology results in about six to eight weeks. The practice where Peterson died, Must Love Kids, released a statement saying that staff was ‘heartbroken and devastated’ by Mykel’s death, however, they could not comment on specifics given the medical examiner’s investigation.

A GoFundMe page set up by Mykel’s family described the young boy as a ‘happy, loving, energetic and smart boy’:

Mykel Wayne Peterson was born on April 29th, 2012 in Portland, Oregon to parents Michael Peterson and Thmeka Curry. Mykel was a happy loving energetic and smart youth boy who was 4 years old soon to be 5. He had a fervent and sincere love for his family.  He will be forever loved for the way that he selflessly loved them and for the memories he left. He loved holidays and family get togethers; just expect him to always be on his PlayStation. He was loved by all and will be truly missed.


Who Is Mykel Peterson?

Mykel Peterson was a four-year-old Canadian boy with autism who died at the dentist’s office on Friday, March 10.


What Happened?

Mykel Peterson got a shot of the common anesthesia drug Ketamine to put him under while the dentist looked at whether he needed fillings or a crown. The procedure went well, but Mykel eventually stopped breathing. CPR was started, 911 was called and Mykel was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

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Eric ItalianoCOED Writer
A New Jersey native & Rutgers University graduate who firmly believes it's better to be lucky than good. My goal in life is to one day write a Batman screenplay. You can probably find me somewhere cooking either too little or too much pasta. contact me - eric.italiano@teamcoed.com
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