This happens all too often here in Atlanta and in other parts of the country but I rarely take the time to write about it. However, I feel compelled to share what happened recently to help other victims of dental malpractice. I received a call from a very nice woman who clearly had a very serious dental nerve injury from a dental procedure. She was frustrated and troubled because she has had intense pain and paresthesia (numbness) in her lower lip, the corner of her mouth and her facial skin, since a general dentist installed implants in replace of teeth #30 and 31. These are the two last mandibular molars on the right side (assuming that the wisdom tooth and that side has been extracted). The reason for the pain and numbness? The general dentist placed the implants into the nerve canal when installing them. Then he backed them out to weeks later. In other words, the dentist crushed her mental nerve by screwing the implants through the nerve canal and into the nerve itself. Apparently, the dentist did not perform the pre-implant procedure testing and planning that is required by the standard of care for dentists under similar circumstances. This is an implant procedure complication that is almost always caused by malpractice and is easily avoidable.
Tragically, this potential client wanted the dentist to pay for an oral surgeon to remove the implants and the dentist agreed to do so IF she would sign a Release (releasing the dentist from all liability for the malpractice related to the implant procedure that caused the nerve injury). Unfortunately, she signed the Release and, in exchange for $4,800, lost the right to sue the dentist for causing a nerve injury that will haunt her for life. Needless to say, the $4,800 did not even begin to adequately compensate this poor and injured woman for the permanent nerve injury that she sustained in the dental chair. Yet, without consulting with an experienced dental malpractice lawyer, the patient signed the release and THEN called me to see if she had a case.
I write this in the hopes that, if you are ever in this position, that you will not sign anything from anyone until you consult with an experienced dental malpractice lawyer who can properly evaluate your case, advise you on how to get the remedial dental care you need and protect your legal rights. Trust me when I tell you this: If you are presented with something to sign by a doctor or dentist after you have been injured during their care, the document will almost certainly have been prepared by the lawyer from the insurance company who represent the doctor or dentist. If you sign it, it is almost a certainty that you will be giving up all legal rights in the future to seek relief for you injuries.
Attorney Robert J. Fleming has been handling wrongful death cases, automobile accident cases, personal injury cases, dental malpractice and medical malpractice lawsuits for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 20 years in and around Atlanta, Georgia and its surrounding areas, including Alpharetta, Austell, Avondale Estates, Chamblee, College Park, Conyers, Duluth, Decatur, Doraville, Hapeville, Johns Creek, Jonesboro, Lawrenceville, Norcross, Peachtree City, Riverdale, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Stone Mountain, and Smyrna. If you have been seriously injured and would like quality legal representation, contact Robert J. Fleming directly on (404) 525-5150 or contact us online.