4 Common Examples of Dental MalpracticeFebruary 8th, 2018
When you hear the term “medical malpractice,” what comes to mind? If you’re like most people, you probably think of scenarios in which surgeons operate on the wrong side of the body or leave sponges inside the cavity before closing it up with sutures.
These kinds of cases are memorable because they are so shocking, but the truth is wrong-site, wrong-procedure, wrong-patient errors (WSPEs) are a lot more common than most people realize. Despite the fact that it’s often the bizarre surgical cases that get the most publicity, medical malpractice can occur in any specialty including dental care.
If you received substandard care from a dentist or oral hygienist and suffered damages as a result, you may have grounds for a claim. To determine if you have a case worth pursuing, turn to The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm.
David A. Bowling has more than 30 years of trial experience, and he can help you negotiate for the compensation you deserve. Call (504) 586-5200 to schedule a consultation with a medical malpractice attorney in New Orleans.
Read on to learn about some of the more common examples of dental malpractice:
1. Extraction Mistakes
Extracting a tooth may be a minor procedure compared to the kinds of surgery that other healthcare providers perform, but if an error occurs at any stage, the consequences could be devastating. Dentists are just as prone as other doctors to commit WSPEs, for example, and if they extract the wrong tooth, the patient will have to undergo another, even more invasive procedure to replace it with an implant.
2. Delayed or Missed Diagnoses
At every appointment, your dentist should conduct a thorough oral exam. This includes assessing the teeth, tongue, gums, throat, neck, and lymph nodes. If a dentist fails to identify a serious condition like oral cancer or gingivitis despite the presence of any notable signs or symptoms, serious and even life-threatening complications could arise.
3. Anesthesia Errors
A lot of dental procedures call for the use of anesthesia. Dentists who fail to administer this drug with reasonable care can be financially liable for any damages that result. This includes errors when administering both general and local anesthetic, like Novocain.
4. Follow-up Negligence
Sometimes, a procedure can go perfectly smoothly but then complications develop during the recovery period. Dentists owe a duty of care to all patients who are still healing following an invasive procedure. If they fail to provide adequate follow-up care and an infection or other complication arises, the patient may have a valid malpractice claim.
Dental procedures can be just as risky as other kinds of surgery. As a result, dentists have an obligation to discuss all potential outcomes with patients prior to working on their mouth, which is known as informed consent. They also have a duty of care to follow all accepted protocols for every oral surgery.
If you think a dentist breached this duty of care, contact The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm today. Call (504) 586-5200 to schedule a case evaluation with a medical malpractice lawyer in New Orleans. You can learn more about malpractice claims in Louisiana by visiting the USAttorneys website.