Minnesota Teen Dies After Suffering Cardiac Arrest During Wisdom Teeth Removal

An Eden Prairie, Minnesota, family is mourning the loss of their teenage daughter, who died Monday following a routine wisdom teeth extraction.

Sydney Galleger, 17, died after a harrowing week of medical complications that began when she suffered cardiac arrest while having her wisdom teeth removed June 9.

"All went good until the very end when her blood pressure shot up and her pulse dropped and then she went into cardiac arrest," her mother, Diane Galleger, wrote on a CaringBridge page the family set up to share updates about their daughter's condition.

Doctors managed to stabilize the teen and transfer her to the University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital. She was placed on a ventilator, but suffered seizures and swelling in her brain, her mother wrote.

After a surgery to reduce the swelling proved unsuccessful on Friday, doctors told the family there was little else they could do.

"We want to rewind to when we had our happy, healthy, funny, beautiful 17-year-old daughter," Galleger wrote Friday after the surgery. "We can’t comprehend it yet and we’re not sure when we will."

It's unclear what caused the healthy teen, who loved to dive, swim and ski, to suffer cardiac arrest. Her family thinks she may have had an undiagnosed heart condition, according to Fox News affiliate KMSP.

"It is a rare event, thank heaven," Dr. Mark Wolff, a professor at New York University College of Dentistry, told CBS News. "We like to think of having wisdom teeth out as a casual occurrence, but it can be an extensive surgery, it's important to remember that. It is surgery and it should be managed judiciously."

The Eden Prairie community rallied after the Galleger family's tragic loss. Balloons and ribbons in the teen's favorite color -- light blue -- adorned houses in the quiet Minneapolis suburb in a show of support. Friends and classmates gathered at the family's home to share stories and help out, NBC affiliate KARE reported. Friends mowed the family's lawn, and sanded and painted their deck, the station reported.

"All of us wanting to do something for the family. It seemed like the only thing we could do, other than praying and whatnot for them," Evan Cocallas, a friend of Sydney's, told the station.

In her honor, lacrosse team members tied light blue ribbons in their hair Saturday as they won their third state championship, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

The Star Tribune reports

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story stated that Galleger was a member of the lacrosse team. She was not.

Popular in the Community