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There are lots of negligence cases in dentistry. Negligence should not be tolerated for dentists are expected to give standard and genuine care to patients. A thorough, correct, and proper treatment should be given in regards to a patient’s oral health. But still, some dentists tend to neglect proper care and patients will complain about it. Once a filed complaint reaches the Board, you need to be prepared by hiring a dental attorney for the defense and license protection as well.

On October 3, 2018, in Wichita Falls, Texas, a patient was examined by the dentist’s colleague, and X- rays were taken. It was noted in the patient’s treatment record that he had no pain but had upper right molar decay. The patient completed a medical history form, in which he described his current dental problem as a “cavity.” According to the October 3 treatment record, the patient’s next visit was going to be for prep, extraction, and bone graft at an unspecified site. Financial arrangements were made for extraction and the bone graft at #1, a ceramic (EMAX) crown at #3) irrigation, and a cavity shield. The patient paid $1,320 for the planned treatment. The patient also initialed and signed an informed consent form for an exam, X-rays, and for the removal of unspecified teeth. The informed consent form was not sited or procedure-specific and did not identify a fractured mandible as a potential complication of surgery.

And on October 4, 2018, the patient underwent treatment by the dentist for the extraction of #1. Following the extraction of #1, the dentist advised the patient that his mandibular right third molar

(#32)* should be extracted. The dentist unsuccessfully attempted to extract #32, damaging the surrounding soft tissue in the process, which caused extreme discomfort for the patient. The dentist was unable to extract the mesial root of #32 and terminated the procedure with the remaining root left in the tooth socket. It was later discovered that the X-rays taken on October 3, 2018, did not adequately show all images required for the full mouth series.

Due to the unprofessional conduct of the dentist, the Board has subjected him to disciplinary action because of the reason that he failed to accurately bill for only goods and/or services that were actually provided. Incompetence and repeated acts of negligence were also included as the basis of the discipline.

Before the Board came up with the decision of disciplinary action, the dentist was offered to have someone to represent him. But he failed to hire a dental attorney for the case. It will be great if the dentist could have consulted a dental attorney upon facing the Board.

Any dentist should remember to be prepared in case if there are filed complaints regarding issues of negligence. Having a dental attorney will be a game-changer. So if you want help, ask Texas Dental Attorney Yong J. An, who has years of experience in handling dental cases. For further details and to schedule a consultation, you may contact him at (832) 428-5679.