- Judy Gan, 64, lost consciousness in the dentist chair while undergoing a complex procedure to have 20 teeth extracted all at once
- The retired librarian, mother-of-two and grandmother from Ellington, Connecticut, died an hour later in hospital in February
- Dr. Rashmi Patel had his license suspended by the Connecticut State Dental Commission last month
- He is accused of failing to respond appropriately when his patient’s oxygen levels dropped and improperly extracting the teeth in a single visit
- The state alleges that Patel’s actions led to her death and he could lose his license permanently at a June 18 hearing
A 64-year-old grandmother who lost consciousness in the dentist chair while undergoing a complex procedure to have 20 teeth extracted all at once, died just one hour later in hospital.
Retired librarian, mother-of-two and grandmother Judy Gan was having the extractions, together with implants and grafts performed at Dr. Patel’s Enfield Dental Surgery in Connecticut on Feb. 17 when she became unresponsive.
The two dental assistants present have since told investigators that they begged Dr. Rashmi Patel to stop what he was doing after his patients’ vitals kept dropping.
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Mother-of-two Judy Gan, 64, lost consciousness in the dentist chair while undergoing a complex procedure to have 20 teeth extracted at once and later died
Patel, a practicing dentist in the state for almost 11 years, allegedly refused a first request by his staff to halt the procedure and call 911 and even continued working after Gan had briefly woken up and asked him to stop.
The Department of Public Health and the state Dental Commission suspended Patel’s license last month after receiving an anonymous tip following Gan’s death, reports WFSB.
The state alleges that Patel’s actions led to her death and he could lose his license permanently at a June 18 hearing before the Connecticut State Dental Commission.
According to documents obtained from the state Department of Public Health, Patel is accused of failing to respond appropriately when the woman’s oxygen levels dropped, and improperly attempted to extract the teeth in a single visit.
Dr. Rashmi Patel has his dentist license suspended last month while the Connecticut State Dental Commission determines if he is responsible for Judy Gan’s death
Patel was aware that Gan had pre-existing medical issues. Records show that she consented to the dental work while Patel’s office received four medical clearances from other doctors.
The doctor’s two dental assistants have since told state investigators that Patel was repeatedly made aware that Gan’s oxygen levels were falling, yet he reportedly wanted to finish his work.
The assistants told investigators that ‘an assistant asked if we could call 911 and he (Patel) said no.’
The dentist soon noted one of the monitors was not working. According to the documents, that is when ‘that same assistant told Dr. Patel to stop the procedure and help her.
‘He then injected the PT with the reversal agent. I thought we were going to stop. I was (relieved) because the oxygen was so unstable I didn’t think it was safe to keep working.’
‘The PT began to wake up and she asked Dr. Patel if we could please stop the procedure and call it a day,’ the assistant continued. ‘Dr. Patel wanted to get the implants in so I took over suctioning.’
Gan was having the extractions, together with implants and grafts performed at Dr. Patel’s Enfield Dental Surgery in Connecticut on Feb. 17 when she became unresponsive
The documents said she ‘kept telling Dr. Patel the PT’s oxygen was dropping. He told her not to tell him again unless it goes under 60. It kept dropping.’
It wasn’t until the situation grew even worse, according to official statements and after a second plea to call 911 that Patel finally agreed.
However by then it was too late as Gan had already flatlined, according to the report.
Just an hour after an ambulance had arrived and rushed Gan to Bay State Medical Center in Massachusetts she was pronounced dead.
On her death certificate the cause reads ‘pending further studies.’
‘It’s my belief that (Gan) did not have to die to receive this dental treatment and it is because of… Patel’s negligence that she died,’ wrote Dr. Gary Pearl, who was asked to review the case by the state’s Department of Public Health.
The health department alleged Patel failed to respond to changes in her condition, failed to interrupt the procedure to assess and evaluate and failed to administer any other emergency medications when the patient’s condition continued to deteriorate.
The website for Dr. Patel’s Enfield Family Dental features several videos claiming people of all ages can benefit from his state-of-the-art compassionate care, but nowhere does it state that he is not currently allowed to practice following his suspension
Judith ‘Judy’ Gan, 64, died suddenly on February 17. She had lived in Ellington, Connecticut for 26 years and had been a children¿s librarian before retiring
Patel’s attorney, Michael Kogut, said there is no medical information indicating that Patel’s actions resulted in Gan’s death. Gan’s family had no comment.
Besides Gan’s death, the health department says that another patient spent six days in the hospital in December following a procedure carried out by Patel.
Despite not currently being allowed to practice, Patel continued to runs two surgeries in Connecticut, one in Enfield and one in Torrington. Both currently remain open with patients being treated by other dentists on staff.
The website for Dr. Patel’s Enfield Family Dental features several videos claiming people of all ages can benefit from his state-of-the-art compassionate care.
‘We have the technology to give you a smile you can be proud of at any age,’ Patel said in one of the videos.
Nowhere on the site does it state that Patel is not currently allowed to practice following his suspension.
The board will decide on June 18 whether to revoke Patel’s license, suspend it for an additional amount of time or clear him of these charges and reinstate the license.
Video: Dentist has his license suspended after patient dies