Dental Malpractice - Dentist Who Failed to Clear Oral Infection Preventing Patient from Getting Important Surgery Results in $300,000 Settlement | Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp

Our client was a 43-year-old disabled individual who saw the defendant dentist because his teeth were extremely decayed with signs of oral infection in both his maxillary and mandibular teeth. One of his doctors advised him he needed to have the dental decay treated before undergoing a very serious surgery to address a life-threatening illness. 

Important Fact: Surgeons will not conduct major surgery in any patient who suffers from signs of ongoing infection.

Our client treated with the dentist on and off for several years. Unfortunately, the infection waxed and waned, and the dentist decided to place a lower denture over infected teeth. As a result, our client was unable to undergo the significant necessary surgery because of the ongoing oral infection that was never properly addressed or corrected by the defendant dentist.

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Our dental malpractice law firm claimed that our client suffered extreme pain-and-suffering during the period of the negligent dental care and our client was never able to undergo the particular surgery in question because his oral infection was never addressed.

Key Legal Strategy

According to dental experts that we retained to review this case, the appropriate plan would have been for the dentist to create dentures, and to suggest an oral surgeon pull all of the infected teeth prior to the dentist completing the dentures. In contrast, the defendant dentist decided to keep some of the patient’s lower teeth and created a cosmetic lower denture.

Our dental experts believed that the treatment and the treatment plan violated the dental standards of care. A dentist retained by the defendant dentist in the case claiming that there was nothing inappropriate with the treatment plan which the dentist offered.


Just days before the jury trial was scheduled to begin, we were able to amicably resolve this dental malpractice case for the sum of $300,000, with confidential terms relating to details of the case.

About Virginia Dental Malpractice

The field of dentistry in Virginia involves the delivery of safe dental care day in and day out, but when a careless or negligent Virginia dentist violates the dental standards of care it can result in permanent and lifetime dental malpractice injuries of many types. A shot administered incorrectly can result in nerve damage, and in some cases even paralyzed areas of tissue; a failure to control oral or dental infection can create tremendous infections leading to something called necrotizing fasciitis, a flesh eating bacterial disease that can be fatal. Dental practice overlaps into medical malpractice when a dental error requires a person to go to the hospital and the dental patient then incurs medical care or oral surgery due to the mistakes. Some of the types of dental malpractice claims seen nationwide are:

  • Anesthesia Complications
  • Failure to Diagnose Oral Diseases or Cancers
  • Injuries to Oral Nerves Resulting in Numbness, and Paralysis
  • Permanent Injuries Due To Bridge and Crown Complications
  • Tooth Extraction Complications Causing Permanent Injuries
  • Root Canal Injuries with Permanent Effects
  • Dental Injuries Leading to Death (Dental Malpractice Wrongful Death)