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November 27th 2018

Dental Negligence

£55,000 damages for patient who needed 15 teeth removing

Sue Jackson

Sue Jackson

Solicitor, Clinical Negligence

£55,000 damages for patient who needed 15 teeth removing

An ‘exemplary’ dental patient who never missed an appointment in over 30 years needed to have 15 teeth removed as abscesses in her gums rotted the bone away. This was despite the patient attending 50 routine appointments with her dentist spanning three decades. The patient only became aware of problems when visiting an alternative practice as her usual dentist was not available. She was informed, to her surprise, at that appointment that several of her teeth were beyond being saved, and she was referred to an implant clinic where further x-rays were taken and the full extent of her problems found.

An ‘exemplary’ dental patient who never missed an appointment in over 30 years needed to have 15 teeth removed as abscesses in her gums rotted the bone away. This was despite the patient attending 50 routine appointments with her dentist spanning three decades. The patient only became aware of problems when visiting an alternative practice as her usual dentist was not available. She was informed, to her surprise, at that appointment that several of her teeth were beyond being saved, and she was referred to an implant clinic where further x-rays were taken and the full extent of her problems found.

The Legal Process

The patient contacted Hudgell Solicitors dental negligence claims team for legal advice and support. Having requested dental records and taken the advice of independent experts, Hudgell Solicitors submitted a formal letter of claim to the dentist, alleging that between 1982 and 2014, despite carrying out root-fillings, extractions and crowns, the dentist failed to provide the expected level of care. Part of the allegations were that he kept re-cementing loose fillings and prescribed antibiotics for infections without investigating the cause of recurrent infections.

The settlement

This matter was settled out of court through the dentist’s indemnifiers. Despite no formal admissions of negligence being made, a settlement of £55,000 was offered and agreed.

Client comment

“To anyone who feels that they might be getting second rate treatment, I would say get a second opinion. You put your trust in your dentist and you don’t question them.” –

Solicitor comment

“At no time, over 30 years, was my client given any indication of any serious problems, so to then discover that she was losing 15 teeth was devastating. The circumstances of this case makes it one of the worst I have seen.” – Solicitor Sue Jackson

 

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