Local Dentist Gives Birth, Then Dies the Next Day

Posted at 12:47 AM, Dec 24, 2013
and last updated 2013-12-24 01:16:08-05
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Dr. Elizabeth Curtis

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. – A Grand Haven dentist died after giving birth to her daughter over the weekend.

Thirty-four-year-old Elizabeth Curtis, a dentist with Creason, Weber & Curtis Family Dentistry, passed away Saturday, according to a post on her Facebook page.

Her husband, Scott, wrote on his wife’s Facebook page Sunday saying, “Good afternoon.  This is Scott.  My daughter Katherine was born yesterday and is healthy and happy.  My beautiful wife however suffered a severe complication and passed away this morning.”

The Grand Haven Tribune reported Curtis lost consciousness when amniotic fluid entered her bloodstream during labor Saturday at North Ottawa Community Hospital.  After delivering the baby, Curtis was transferred Spectrum Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids where she died the next morning.


Katherine Curtis

An article posted to said, “Unfortunately, there are no warnings signs for amniotic fluid embolism. Its clinical manifestations may be similar to that of anaphylactic or septic shock. Symptoms develop suddenly and progress rapidly.”  It also said, “The incidence of this rare event has been difficult to measure but is estimated to be between 1 in 4,500 and 1 in 80,000 pregnancies. Certain factors may increase the risk of a woman having amniotic fluid embolism. The condition is a medical emergency requiring rapid treatment to manage low blood oxygen and low blood pressure in the mother and to safely deliver the baby, if he or she hasn’t been born yet.”

According to her biography on the Creason, Weber & Curtis Family Dentistry website, “Dr. Curtis attended Michigan State University, then The University of Michigan Dental School. She was born and raised in Grand Haven where she lives with her husband Scott and their son, Adam.  Her favorite West Michigan activities include golf, cycling and cross country skiing.  Dr. Curtis serves on the Board of the Muskegon Dental Society and is a chair on the PR committee for the Michigan Dental Association. She is also active in Grand Haven Rotary, the Chamber of Commerce, and PEO (a women’s philanthropic organization). She is an active member of the Muskegon District Dental Society, the MDA, the ADA, and the Academy of General Dentistry.”

Curtis also had her own YouTube channel in which she posted videos about keeping teeth healthy.

Services are set for 11 a.m. Saturday at the First Presbyterian Church in Grand Haven.