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Georgia Dental Malpractice

Dental malpractice in Georgia can take many forms. Some of the most common reasons malpractice occurs is a lack of training by the dentist performing certain procedures (such as root canals, dental implants and oral cancer screenings); a lack of communication between two dentists (whether in the same office or in separate dental offices) who are involved in the care and treatment of a patient; a failure to properly document and observe important anatomical landmarks and measurements (thi is especially important when performing root canals and dental implant procedures); failing to review the patient’s chart and medical history prior to using or prescribing drugs that the patient may be alert to or which may interact with medications that the patient is current taking; and carelessly performing a procedure which results in injury to the patient.

The standard of care for dental malpractice in Georgia requires that all of the above situtions be handled in a fashion that a reasonable dentist would do in like or similar circumstances. Many of the standard of care violations that we uncover occur when general dentists perform dental procedures that should be referred out to a specialist. This occurs most often with complicated extractions, root canals and the installation of dental implants. One area that we have seen that results in a lot of dental malpractice claims is large corporate dental chains who advertise as providing affordeable dentures causing severe dental nerve injuries when the attempt an “all on 4” dental implant procedure. This procedure involves extracting all of the patient’s existing teeth (both top and bottom), placing 4 implants on the top and 4 on the bottom, and then attaching the implants to these implants. Unfortunately, the high volume of procedures preformed result in many serious dental nerve injuires that could be avoided with proper training, careful placement and other quality control processes that don’t happen in high volume dental implant offices that sometimes focus on quantity over quality.

Lawsuits in these situations will focus on duty (from the dentist to the patient), breach (of the standard of care, in other words the procedure is not done properly) and the resulting damages (often dental nerve injuries and other types of dental injuries that result from the procedure. These form the basis of the lawsuit and each of the elements are necessary to pursue a dental malpractice case in Georgia.

Robert J. Fleming is a partner in the law firm of Katz Wright & Fleming, LLC in Atlanta, Georgia and Decatur, Georgia. He is a personal injury attorney who has been handling wrongful death, dental malpractice, professional negligence, car accidents and premises injury cases for individuals and families who have been severely injured or died as a result of negligence since 1995. He practices in the metropolitan Atlanta area including the city of Decatur, Fulton, DeKalb, Clayton, Gwinnett, and Cobb counties in Georgia. If you or a family member has been seriously injured and would like to discuss your case in complete confidence, contact Robert J. Fleming directly on (404) 525-5150 or contact us online. We are here to help.

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