Common Dental Negligence Lawsuits
Posted in Medical Malpractice on August 2, 2021
When we visit the dentist, we expect him or her to treat us with the care and diligence required of any Missouri healthcare provider. Unfortunately, some dental professionals commit acts of negligence that cause serious harm to patients. If you are injured while you are visiting the dentist, you could file a lawsuit against him or her to recover compensation for the physical, emotional, and financial harm you endured. In these situations, it is important to speak with a Missouri dental negligence lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.
What Is Dental Negligence?
All medical professionals, including dentists, physicians, surgeons, and nurses, have an obligation to perform their duties according to a set of accepted standards. These professionals also have a duty to perform their jobs with reasonable diligence. Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider breaches this standard of care and causes harm to a patient.
Although dental negligence is relatively rare when compared to other types of malpractice, significant harm can occur when you are under a dentist’s care. You may develop serious injuries and experience life-threatening complications, leading to thousands of dollars in medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional trauma. In these situations, you may have grounds to file a dental negligence lawsuit against him or her.
Common Examples of Dental Negligence
For malpractice to occur, you must prove that your dentist committed an act of negligence while you were under his or her care. In particular, your dentist must have acted in a way that another similarly trained and reasonable dental professional would not have under the same circumstances.
There are many examples of dental negligence, including the following.
- Extraction errors: Extracting teeth is a very common dental procedure. However, a dentist may make a mistake while performing an extraction. For example, he or she may extract the wrong tooth or harm the gums or nerves during the procedure. The dentist may also recommend an unnecessary extraction of a healthy tooth or fail to follow sanitary guidelines, leading to an infection.
- Failure to diagnose: Like doctors, dentists have a responsibility to check patients for key symptoms of oral diseases and cancers. If your dentist fails to diagnose your condition, it could worsen over time, leading to a poorer prognosis had he or she adequately assessed the symptoms.
- Prescription errors: Dentist may prescribe medication like antibiotics and painkillers to patients. If the dentist prescribes the wrong medication, the wrong dosage, or a medication that you are allergic to, you can experience serious complications.
- Improper follow-up or aftercare: After a dental procedure, a dentist has a responsibility to provide proper aftercare and follow-up instructions. He or she also has a duty to ensure that a patient is not in pain or experiencing any complications following the treatment. If your dentist fails to provide this care, you may have grounds for a claim.
This list is not exhaustive, and you may have been injured due to another act of dental malpractice. If you experience any type of harm after visiting the dentist, it is important to speak with a Missouri medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible. Your attorney can evaluate your case and help you identify whether or not dental negligence occurred.
Additionally, your lawyer can represent your case in civil court, help you identify the types of compensation you may qualify for, and enlist the help of dental experts who can provide testimony on your behalf. After seeking medical attention for your injuries, contact a Kansas City medical malpractice attorney to discuss your legal options.