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Dentists can also commit medical malpractice

It's safe to say that most people don't like going to the dentist. For many, a dental visit is associated with painful procedures like filling cavities and extracting teeth. Just like medical patients, dental patients in Kentucky place their lives in the hands of dentists and trust that these professionals will treat them with an acceptable level of care. However, many people are unaware that dentists, like physicians, can commit medical malpractice. A lawsuit filed in another state alleged that a young girl suffered permanent injuries as the result of a botched dental procedure.

The girl was 12 years old at the time of her procedure and went in for a seemingly routine extraction of her wisdom teeth, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit said four of the girl's teeth were pulled and one was surgically uprighted in the procedure. After the procedure, the girl allegedly experienced swelling, blistering, bruising and numbness on the left half of her tongue. After a follow-up visit, the girl was referred to a nerve injury clinic where testing showed she had significant loss of sensory perception, the lawsuit claimed.

Nearly three months after her initial procedure, the girl underwent another surgery to repair her nerves, and it was discovered that her lingual nerve had been severed during her first procedure, according to allegations. The family says the girl suffers pain, neurological deficits and permanent nerve damage. A jury sided with the plaintiffs and awarded the girl almost $700,000 in damages.

Dentists in Kentucky are required to have years of training and experience before they can legally practice. However, this does not prevent mistakes from happening. Victims can seek to hold dentists accountable for medical malpractice by filing a lawsuit. Damages from a successful claim could provide victims and families with much-needed financial relief.

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