Finley Boyle, 3, Dead After Dentist Visit, Parents File Lawsuit

Huffington Post – by Carla Herreria

UPDATE: Finley Boyle died on Friday evening. A statement on behalf of her family was issued by Hospice Hawaii and read: “It is with heavy hearts that we announce that at 8:47 p.m. last night, Finley Boyle passed away with her family at her side.”

A family in Hawaii is suing a dentist after a visit for a root canal procedure left their three-year-old daughter brain dead. According to mother Ashley Boyle, she only has a few days to live.

On Dec. 3, Boyle took her daughter Finley to Island Dentistry in Kailua to undergo four root canals from Dr. Lilly Geyer. Before the procedure took place, Finley was given a highly potent mixture of sedatives, including Demerol, a fast-acting opioid analgesic. Twenty-six minutes later, the young girl went into cardiac arrest.

Finley’s parents say that their daughter did not receive immediate CPR.


The lawsuit filed against Dr. Geyer claims that Island Dentistry staff was ill-prepared for this type of emergency and points out that during the incident, staff had to run down the hall to ask for help from a neighboring pediatrician.

The family’s attorney, Rick Fried, says the entire mishap could have been avoided if staff had properly administered the sedatives and monitored Finley’s vital signs. Fried said that most of the dental work was unnecessary to begin with and that the staff didn’t take necessary precautions.

We’re just shocked that these drugs, in these doses, in this combination, could be given to a child of this size,” Fried told Hawaii News Now.

Fried obtained dental records from the morning of the procedure that show only three notations on Finley’s vital signs. The Associated Press reports that according to guidelines by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, vital signs should be monitored and documented at least every five minutes for patients under sedation.

A fundraising page, Fundley For Finley, has been set up to help pay for Finley’s medical care expenses. The page notes that the lack of oxygen during the procedure resulted in severe and permanent brain damage.

She will probably not be with us much longer,” said Boyle, who is a registered nurse. “We were all hoping. Even the doctors are in tears. We were all just waiting for her to wake up.”


Now, Boyle says that her main concern is the quality of life for Finley during the time she has left. Their family is spending their last moments together at Hospice Hawaii.

“We speak to her. We sing to her. Play music for her all day. She lays there. Whisper in her ear, getting Reiki, aromatherapy, acupuncture, anything, really,” said Boyle during an emotional interview.

Pray for Finley Facebook group was set up for friends and family and expresses gratitude for the support from the community.

“Thank you for your continued concern, prayers and generosity,” the page writes in a recent post. “The outpouring of love from far and wide has touched the family hearts in the hardest of times. Finley went home on hospice and is resting with her family. Continue to pray for peace and serenity for Finley and the family.”

10 thoughts on “Finley Boyle, 3, Dead After Dentist Visit, Parents File Lawsuit

  1. Why would a 3 year-old need a root canal in the first place?

    A root canal is done to save a tooth that would otherwise have to be pulled. Doesn’t she have “baby teeth” that will fall out anyway?

    I think there’s a dentist that needs to have his skull crushed with a baseball bat.

    I have to add that the parents couldn’t have been very bright if they allowed this procedure.

  2. EXACTLY…..



      1. Yep. Dentists are notorious for talking people into unneeded, expensive, procedures. This was a Con job. I can’t believe that any parent would fall for it. Plus, they say the Mother is a Registered Nurse. GEEZ! What a Dummy! Go to a different Dentist. Anyone, with an ounce of sense, knows that a child of that age has Baby Teeth and would have No need for a Root Canal (much less 4)! Just pull the tooth/teeth (not that I believe they even Needed to be pulled) and let the Adult Teeth come in, Naturally. What “Registered Nurse ” would not know that or know that you don’t give a 3-year-old Demerol?! It is mind-boggling, and infuriating. IMHO, the parents need to be prosecuted, along with the so called “Dentist”, for allowing it to happen.

        1. People used to go to the dentist get a filling and walk out with 36 1/4 grainers of hydro morophine every time, and they would be completly legal because the dentist wrote ya a script. 😎

          1. LOL Depending on the Dentist, you still can. BUT, you Don’t give it to a 3-year-old child. 😉

          2. Absolutely not. Dilaudid is not for kids when ya do them like that. That was back in the druggie days for me years ago – hell that was back in the 70`s and 80`s . Elvis P. kind of put the damper on Dilaudid he did. I really used to just love that stuff back then. Live and learn though I guess eh Angel 😉

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