Failure to Obtain Informed Consent for Dental Restoration — $200,000 Verdict

The plaintiff, a landscaper in his late sixties, underwent a full mouth restoration, the purpose of which was to improve and whiten his smile. Throughout the restoration, the plaintiff developed severe complications, including pain and bite problems. He saw the defendant general dentist and various specialists at least forty times over two years before finally switching to another dentist.

The plaintiff filed a dental malpractice lawsuit against the defendant, alleging that the defendant’s negligence resulted in dental pain, bite problems, broken teeth, and lost crowns and veneers.

Defendant denied any negligence or wrongdoing. He contended that he informed the plaintiff of the risks and that, when complications arose, he treated them appropriately. The defendant further contented that he timely referred the plaintiff to appropriate specialists as needed.

The plaintiff’s general dentistry expert opined that the defendant violated the standard of care by failing to obtain informed consent for the restoration; failed to advise plaintiff of the risks of the restoration; failed to advise plaintiff of other options besides the restoration; and failed to properly perform the restoration, including root canals and bite adjustments.

After deliberation, the jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff and awarded the plaintiff $200,000 in damages.

With permission from Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements & Experts; Lewis Laska, Editor, 901 Church St., Nashville, TN 37203-3411, 1-800-298-6288.