Lawsuit Filed After Children Infected at Orange County Dental Clinic - NBC Southern California

Lawsuit Filed After Children Infected at Orange County Dental Clinic

"We have one client -- a 4-year-old girl -- who has only three teeth remaining," an attorney for the parents said.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Lawsuit Filed in Dental Infection Case

    Orange County's Children's Dental Group has been slapped with more lawsuits after dozens of children allegedly came down with potentially life-threatening infections from procedures they did not need. Gordon Tokumatsu reports for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 7, 2016. (Published Monday, Nov. 7, 2016)

    Four-year-old Naira sits in her father's arms with tube connections visible on her chest.

    The tubes are used four times a day to administer powerful antibiotics that fight an infection in her bones and tissues.

    "She can't do nothing. She needs to stay all the time in bed with my wife," the child's father Ramon Amador said.

    Naira's family is just one of several plaintiffs that were introduced Monday by attorneys who are filing suit against the dentists and owners of Children's Dental Group in Orange County after attorneys say 57 children were infected.

    The complaint alleges medical malpractice, negligence, medical battery and false imprisonment, among other charges.

    Attorneys say the "life threatening" infections came from tooth extractions and other treatments with bacteria infected water.

    The Orange County Health Care Agency said in a previous report that samples from Children's Dental Clinic water system tested positive for mycobacteria. 

    "This is a high-volume, high-profit clinic that cares about one thing: money," attorney Catherine Lombardo said.

    The plaintiffs allege that the dental office exposed dozens of children to bacteria contaminated water by performing unnecessary operations on their baby teeth, Lombardo said.

    "They come out, right then and there, and say, 'We need to do this surgery right now!'" Lombardo said.

    Parent, like Lorena Sanchez, are essentially frightened into signing waiver forms, Lombardo said.

    The children are then allegedly strapped to papoose boards, or a stabilization board that restricts movement, and given root canals, crowns or even full extractions while parents are barred from being in the room.

    Sanchez's 6-year-old, Leo, who lives with autism, is named in the complaint.

    "We have one client -- a 4-year-old girl -- who has only three teeth remaining," Lombardo said.

    Lombardo's firm says low-income communities -- especially those in Latino neighborhoods -- are targeted because they often have medical coverage.

    She claims the dentists perform 80 to 100 procedures a day at a cost of between $500 and $1,000 each.

    "These clinics are barbaric and cruel," Lombardo said.

    NBC4 called and emailed Children's Dental Group several times for a response to the charges, but the our messages have not been returned.

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