Can I File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Against My Dentist?
Posted in Medical Malpractice on March 23, 2021
Medical malpractice claims allege that a medical professional failed to uphold his or her duty of care to a patient, causing harm to the patient in the process. Many medical professionals can be liable for malpractice, including doctors, nurses, surgeons, and anesthesiologists.
Dental professionals may also commit acts of negligence that cause harm to patients. If you suffered malpractice at the hands of your dentist, you could file a lawsuit against him or her for your damages.
What Is Dental Malpractice?
Dentists are medical professionals who have an obligation to uphold a certain duty of care to patients. This means that every dentist must act in a way that a reasonably prudent dentist with the same credentials would under the same circumstances. If a dentist harms a patient through a negligent act or omission, he or she commits dental malpractice.
Depending on the negligent act, dental malpractice can lead to severe, life-threatening complications. Common types of dental malpractice include the following.
- Oral infections
- Root canal injuries
- Improper use of dental equipment
- Failure to administer the correct dosage of anesthesia
- Failure to diagnose serious oral diseases or cancers
- Damaging oral nerves during dental procedures
- Improperly implanting bridges or crowns
- Errors during tooth extraction surgery
- Complications from anesthetics, including Novocain
- Failure to review or assess medical history before a procedure
Proving Dental Malpractice in Missouri
If your dentist committed an act of malpractice and you sustained an injury due to his or her actions, you could file a lawsuit against him or her. To prove your case, you will need to gather enough evidence to prove that the dentist owed you a duty of care, that he or she breached the duty of care, and that you suffered injuries and damages as a direct result of his or her actions.
As soon as you realize that the malpractice occurred, take photographs of any visible injuries, such as bruising, bleeding, or swelling. If any witnesses, such as friends or family members, were with you before, during, or after the procedure, ask them to provide detailed statements about you, the dentist, and the events of your appointment.
You will also need to gather all relevant records related to your dental health, the treatment you received, and the extent of your injuries. You have the right to collect this information from the dentist’s office yourself, but in some cases, the office may refuse to provide it. In these situations, a medical malpractice attorney can help.
Do You Need a Dental Malpractice Lawyer?
Medical malpractice claims, including dental malpractice, can be very complex. You will need to prove not only that you suffered injuries, but that the dentist’s actions deviated from what a reasonable dentist would have done under the same circumstances. You will need to submit medical evidence as well as an Affidavit of Qualified Health Care Provider to provide insight on the dentist’s actions and prove that negligence did occur.
These tasks can be challenging to accomplish without an attorney on your side. A medical malpractice lawyer can provide significant benefits, including the following.
- Access to expert medical witnesses who can provide testimony on your behalf
- Knowledge of the Missouri civil court system and medical malpractice laws
- The ability to handle all aspects of your case so you can focus on recovery
- Negotiation skills for conversations with the dentist and his or her attorney
As soon as possible after your injury, contact a Kansas City medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your case. Your lawyer will help you understand your legal options and strategize your optimal path to maximum compensation.