Not a lot of people realize that they have the ability to sue their dentist for dental malpractice. If in doubt about a procedure that caused you harm, speak to a malpractice attorney.
Just about everyone realizes that lawyers generally carry malpractice insurance. However, not a lot of people realize their dentist also carries similar insurance for mistakes that they may make. Medical malpractice is fairly common and in most instances people will know immediately what that refers to when they see or read a news item. One doesn’t often read stories about dental malpractice, but it does happen. If you think your dentist has done something negligently and has caused you serious harm, speak to an experienced malpractice lawyer and find out what your rights are.
Statistically speaking, dental malpractice claims have held relatively steady for the last ten years or so. The one area where dental malpractice claims differ from medical malpractice cases is in the area of damages awarded. In other words, dental malpractice claims are usually smaller. Typically, when harm does occur, it happens due to improper treatment or services for the patient or the dentist failed to spot or correctly diagnose problems.
In many cases, dental injuries in a malpractice case deal with damage to the tongue, jaw, lips or the nerves affecting those areas. There may also be a failure to notice cancer or other diseases of the mouth, wounds caused by botched dental surgery/treatment, or death/injury from improper use of anesthetic.
When you go to a dentist for treatment, diagnosis, dental surgery or even just a check up, you expect them to be professional, properly diagnose any problems you may have, and prescribe the right treatment. Say for instance you have an infected tooth. You would think the dentist would put you on the right antibiotics to treat it before doing any work in your mouth. If something goes wrong here – say the dentist decides to work on your abscessed tooth or gives you the wrong antibiotic – you may have grounds for a dental malpractice suit.
Keep in mind that not everything that goes wrong is grounds for a lawsuit. However, if you suffer a severe injury that may or may not be permanent, speaking to a dental malpractice attorney should be high on your list of things to do. Your attorney will be able to tell you if you do have grounds to pursue a lawsuit or not.
Unfortunately, there have been cases of dental patients who have died as a result of seeing the dentist. Those cases involved improperly administered anesthesia or an infection that raged out of control because it was not properly treated. There are so many other things that have the potential to go wrong, including surgery that causes permanent damage where the patient can no longer eat, talk or swallow properly.
If something like this has happened to you, talk to a qualified attorney and find out what your right are.
Tim Anderson works with Atlanta Personal Injury attorney, Stephen M. Ozcomert. The firm specializes in personal injury, malpractice, motorcycle accidents, and wrongful death. To learn more about Atlanta personal injury lawyer, Stephen M. Ozcomert, visit Ozcomert.com.