A Lake County dentist is the subject of an investigation by the state’s attorney’s office after a patient died following a dental procedure in early June.
According to the Lake County Coroner’s Office, Corey Causey visited Dr. Aaron Swik at the Oral Maxillofacial Surgeons of Lake County facility on June 9 to have several teeth extracted.
After being put under anesthesia, Causey stopped breathing and went into cardiac arrest. He died the next day at a local hospital.
According to Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek, Causey was given too high a dose of Propofol, an anesthetic that generally calls for at least two people to effectively administer the drug.
Feeling out of the loop? We'll catch you up on the Chicago news you need to know. Sign up for the weekly Chicago Catch-Up newsletter here.
“It was the dose of medication, and the fact that he was in the dental office that piqued my interest right away,” she said. “Oral surgeons are in a unique position where they can administer both the anesthetic and perform the procedure. This is problematic when someone’s not exclusively focused on administering the anesthetic, which is something quite serious. So this was a recipe for disaster.
Banek says that while Cwik was acting in accordance with state law, he was not following the rules of properly administering the Propofol.
“Obviously, the coroner’s office investigates deaths that are preventable, and this is one I absolutely think was preventable,” she said.
According to the Daily Herald, Banek also found that Cwik did not supply supplemental oxygen until the procedure was underway, and did not monitor Causey’s vitals closely enough to safeguard against potential complications.
Banek says she has passed along her findings to the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office, who is investigating the case.
Causey’s family, as well as Cwik and the dental office, are declining comment on the case, citing the pending nature of the investigation.