Mr S received a lump sum of £53,000 following a 10 year delay in diagnosis of periodontal disease. By the time the condition was diagnosed, many of his teeth had a very poor prognosis.
Mr S registered with the defendant in 1997 and had regular 6-8 month check-ups. These visits usually involved a quick scale and polish and on occasion an x-ray. The most significant dental work he had had done before the negligence was a couple of filling and a tooth extraction due to an abscess.
In January 2011 Mr S attended for a scheduled appointment and raised concerns that one of his teeth appeared to be loose. He was advised his teeth had deteriorated recently and it was suggested that he should consider a denture. The severity of his condition was not explained at this appointment.
In October 2011, this tooth dropped out and he returned to the defendant. He discussed his condition with his dentist and was informed that he had been suffering with a bone loss condition, “Periodontal Disease” since 2005. This was the first time the client had been made aware of this.
A number of x-rays were performed which confirmed that his teeth and gums were in a poor state and he was referred to a specialist.
In May 2012 it was noted that 4 of his teeth required extraction under general anaesthetic and he was subsequently fitted with upper and lower dentures. He was advised that it was likely that in time he would lose all of his teeth.
The expert instructed in the case felt the defendant had singlehandedly watched over the destruction of Mr S’s teeth.
Mr S suffered a lot of anxiety about his teeth and the thought of extensive dental treatment, and his self-confidence had suffered. He was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and his damages will help with a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
Mr S suffered preventable deterioration of his periodontal tissues and bone loss which resulted in the loss of 10 teeth and it is highly probable that more teeth will be lost in the future. The amount secured will assist in funding extensive and expensive remedial treatment.