Docs cleared in Boca cheerleader's death

Posted by Rachel Leigh - email

WEST BOCA, FL (WFLX) - Two local plastic surgeons have been cleared by the State Department of Health after a West Boca teenager died while undergoing breast surgery.

Stephanie Kuleba, a West Boca High cheerleader, died in March 2008 from a reaction to anesthesia during her breast reconstruction. She died from a rare genetic condition that caused her body to overheat. It was triggered by the anesthesia and could have been treated with a drug called Dentrolene, but that drug wasn't available at the surgeon's clinic.

Kuleba's mother spoke Wednesday after filing a lawsuit against her doctors, Dr. Steven Shuster and Dr. Peter Warheit. Her parents say the doctor's office was not prepared for an emergency. "Had the proper care been taken by the medical professionals involved with Stephanie surgery, she would be here today."

Confidential documents, just released, show all complaints against the surgeon and anesthesiologist were dismissed because there was "insufficient evidence".

Stephanie's parents argue they never knew the state even investigated the death, and they are still suing.