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Implants are a relatively recent advance in dentistry, and are becoming increasingly common. Essentially an implant is an artificial titanium root, placed into the bone, around which crown or bridge work can then be constructed.
Sometimes there is insufficient bone to place the implant, and bone augmentation is required before the implant can be placed.
More and more dentists are placing implants, but few of them have undergone detailed training, and many are under qualified to perform such technically demanding work. This has led to an increase in dental implant negligence.
Implant placement can lead to damage to nerves, or other surrounding structures, and sometimes implants are placed at such a bad angle that damage can be caused to the jaw bone. Even if damage is not caused to neighbouring structures a badly angled implant can lead to a painful of cosmetically unattractive outcome, which may lead to a successful claim for damages.
Failure of an implant will not necessarily lead to a successful claim for dental implant negligence, since medical factors or the smoking habits of the patient may well be causative of the failure of the implant.
The Dental Negligence Team acted for a 50 year old woman who received £25,000 following the substandard fitting of a dental implant.
The Dental Negligence Team recovered compensation for David due to the failure to obtain informed consent to implant treatment and for substandard treatment in fitting of the implant, which was placed at an angle and caused David significant pain.
The Dental Negligence Team acted for a man, who had been in regular attendance at his dental practice, for a period of over ten years. Over this period, the man complained of bleeding gums, loose teeth and abscesses.
His dentist carried out basic periodontal assessments but did not provide any specific treatment other than routine scaling, oral hygiene and antibiotics. Dissatisfied the man attended a new dentist, who immediately diagnosed him as having severe periodontal problems.
The man required surgical intervention, along with future extractions and implant restorations.