The plaintiff/patient suffered from the genetic condition meliogenesis Imperfecta and bruxism. Because of her condition, she needed to have a full mouth restoration performed for dental, medical and aesthetic reasons. However, she could not afford the procedure and planned to travel to Bangkok to have the procedures. The patient’s sister was allegedly a patient of the defendant dentist and told him of her sister’s plans. The defendant dentist allegedly offered to do the procedure for whatever she could afford and she would not have to travel out of the county for the procedure.
The patient underwent the procedure performed by the defendant dentist. After the procedure was completed, the patient complained of dental sensitivity and jaw pain. But, she refused to return to allow the defendant dentist to examine her or make additional adjustments. The patient presented to another, local dentist who recommended that he re-do the procedure. Therefore the patient underwent another full mouth restoration only months after the first one was completed. The patient incurred charges of $70,000 for the procedures. The patient’s local dentist treated the patient for three years before she stopped complaining of sensitivity and jaw pain with her second set of crowns. The patient alleged that the expense and long time frame for the subsequent procedure resulted from the defendant dentist’s negligence. She further alleged that the standard of care was breached, causing her malocclusion, pain and additional dental work.
The defendant dentist’s experts opined that he had complied with the standard of care in completing her full mouth restoration. He further opined that sensitivity after a full mouth restoration is common, and it takes time to adjust to the new crowns. The expert also opined that the patient’s genetic condition made her hypersensitive and caused her to take longer to adjust. Additionally, he opined that her jaw pain was muscular and caused by her pre-existing bruxism and anxiety, not malocclusion.
According to reports, a defense verdict was returned.
With permission from Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements & Experts; Lewis Laska, Editor, 901 Church St., Nashville, TN 37203-3411, 1-800-298-6288.