I was very saddened to recently hear about the death on May 5, 2011, of a young 16 year old girl who was a sophomore in high school in a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She was in the ROTC program and had aspirations to join the Army.
Miciah Bonzani went into cardiac arrest while under anesthesia to have her wisdom teeth removed. She was taken to a hospital, placed on life support, and then died 2 days later.
She was born with a heart defect which had required two surgeries before her first birthday.
What is also troubling to me about this unfortunate death is that one of the media organizations that covered the story WPXI/Pittsburgh.com, did not even mention that it occurred while having wisdom teeth extracted. They simply called it “dental work” and an “outpatient medical procedure”, although I would think knowing it was a wisdom teeth surgery may be relevant information to those reading the story. See http://www.wpxi.com/news/27808435/detail.html
Numerous other deaths have occurred to young teenagers and young adults while having third molars extracted. Many of these cases are described here http://www.teethremoval.com/death.html
A lot of controversy exists surrounding the removal of healthy wisdom teeth. Currently no scientific evidence exists to recommend removing healthy wisdom teeth as it can lead to many complications and in rare cases death.
Less than 2 months ago a 17 year old girl also died in the U.S. while having her wisdom teeth removed. http://blog.teethremoval.com/17-year-old-female-dies-after-wisdom-teeth-removal/
Source: Chuck Biedka. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Family, friends mourn death of New Kensington girl, 16. May 7, 2011. http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/pittsburgh/s_735809.html