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Stiff penalty demanded for Kamloops dentist who left patient with brain damage

VANCOUVER — A hearing is underway for a Kamloops, B.C., dental surgeon who improperly sedated a young woman during a routine operation, leaving her with a severe brain injury.

The patient, identified only as HZ, was deeply sedated in November 2012 while having her wisdom teeth removed, even though Dr. Bobby Rishiraj had not been approved to perform such a procedure.

A disciplinary panel of the College of Dental Surgeons of B.C., said in a decision last month that the dentist was so incompetent that he did not recognize HZ was in cardiac arrest and therefore delayed efforts to resuscitate her.

The decision said Rishiraj was authorized to provide moderate sedation only and that he admitted his clinic did not comply with sedation and general anesthetic standards.

College lawyers have told the penalty hearing that Rishiraj was reckless and cavalier and any penalty must reflect his great misconduct.

The dentist, who continues to practise, with sedation limits imposed by the college, could face a fine, suspension or both. (CKNW)

The Canadian Press

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