What can I do if my dentist performed a procedure without my consent?

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What can I do if my dentist performed a procedure without my consent?

I had a dental appointment to fix a tooth that I had told them that I

have a problem with. However, the dentist went ahead and re-did my 3 old fillings that were on the same side of the mouth without telling me. Apparently, 1 of the fillings was too close to the nerve and I’ve been in excruciating pain for 4 weeks. Now I need a root canal and a crown that I have to pay so much out of pocket for. I called the office and told them what they did to me was malpractice since they did not have my consent. They said they will talk to the dentist and call me back, it has been 3 weeks and they never called me back. Can you please guide me what I can do?

Asked on March 1, 2017 under Malpractice Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The only thing you can do, if they will not voluntarily compensate you in some way you find acceptable, would be to file a malpractice suit based on both his performing the procedure without your consent and his seeming negligence in how he re-did one of the filings, to cause the pain, root canel, etc. Malpractice suits can be expensive to bring, however: you need to hire a medical expert (e.g. another dentist) to examine you and the medical records and write a report and (if necessary) testify in court, and this can cost a few thousand dollars--and that's before considering the cost of an attorney. Consult with a malpractice attorney to see if it is worth bringing a case. Many malpractice attorneys provide a fee initial consultation to evaluate a case--you can ask about that before making an appointment. 


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