What are my rights if I had a root canal done 10 months ago and the dentist broke a drill bit off in the bottom of the canal and now I have an abscess?

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What are my rights if I had a root canal done 10 months ago and the dentist broke a drill bit off in the bottom of the canal and now I have an abscess?

He said it shouldn’t hurt anything leaving it in there because it would be major surgery to remove it. Now it is absessed where the drill bit is at and they are telling me that they will have to extract the tooth and put a implant in. The charge will be about $3000. However, they said that they would give me credit where I had paid for the root canal. I am in severe pain and can’t afford the have it done.

Asked on September 17, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Mississippi

Answers:

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

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Medical/dental malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to exercise due care that degree of care that a reasonable medical/dental practitioner in the community would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm.
Prior to filing a lawsuit against the dentist, it may be possible to settle the case with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier when you complete your dental treatment and are released by the dentist.  It would be preferable to complete your treatment so that you will have the total bills because if you settle the case prematurely, you won't be able to go back to the insurance company and ask for more money.
Your claim filed with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier should include your dental bills, dental reports and if applicable, 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/medical/dental condition and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to your dental bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.
If the case is settled with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.
If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the dentist.
If the case is NOT settled with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, your lawsuit for negligence against the dentist must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights in the matter forever.


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