Do I have a claim against a dentist who installed 2 bridges in the same location?

UPDATED: Mar 21, 2013

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Do I have a claim against a dentist who installed 2 bridges in the same location?

The 1st lasted under 10 years, the 2nd under 5 years, and is partially warranteed. The problem is the bridge is no longer an option and he told me I now needed 2 dental implants (which they don’t do). When he initially recommended a bridge for an extracted tooth I had since a child, he mentioned nothing about an implant and did not mention that he would have to literally destroy at least one of my virgin teeth. I am fairly sure the bridge is what caused one tooth to completely crack. I am in the process of having 2 implants (expensive yet permanent) but feel the dentist is negligent for not mentioning an implant in the first place and damaging good teeth.

Asked on March 21, 2013 under Malpractice Law, Massachusetts


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It would be advisable to have your dental records reviewed by a second dentist and also to be examined by that second dentist.  If that dentist writes a report supporting a malpractice claim against the first dentist, then proceed with the malpractice claim

Malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable dental practitioner in the community would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm).

Prior to filing a lawsuit for negligence against the first dentist, it may be possible to settle the case with his malpractice insurance carrier.  Your claim filed with the malpractice insurance carrier should include your dental bills, dental reports (especially the report from the second dentist), and documentation of any wage loss.  Compensation for the dental bills is straight reimbursement.  The dental reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the dental bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  If the case is settled with the first dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the malpractice insurance carrier, reject rhe settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the first dentist.  If the case is NOT settled with the malpractice insurance carrier, your lawsuit for negligence against the first dentist must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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