Common liability issues in dental negligence claims
Produced in partnership with Mike Hill of Trinity Chambers

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note produced in partnership with Mike Hill of Trinity Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Common liability issues in dental negligence claims
  • Periodontal claims
  • Basic peridontal examination
  • Oral hygiene
  • Gum disease
  • Cosmetic dentistry
  • Consent disputes
  • Root fillings
  • Orthodontic claims
  • Failure to diagnose dental caries
  • More...

Common liability issues in dental negligence claims

There are a number of commonly encountered liability disputes when dealing with dental claims. These include:

  1. periodontal claims

  2. cosmetic dentistry

  3. consent disputes

  4. root fillings

  5. orthodontic claims

  6. partial extractions

  7. failure to diagnose dental caries

Periodontal claims

Gum disease claims are very common. The scenario is often that a patient has changed practice for some reason or a practice has changed hands. The new dentist will tell the patient that they have gum disease or, often, assume that the patient already knows. The news is more often than not met with considerable upset and anger.

Basic peridontal examination

There is a duty to monitor the periodontal (structures and tissues surrounding teeth) condition at each and every examination. A dentist should record as a minimum the results of a Basic Periodontal Examination (BPE) at each examination. For NHS dentists it is a contracted part of the overall examination. The mouth is split into six sextants and a blunt, ball-ended probe is used to gently measure any pockets under the gum margin. There is also a duty to take bitewing radiographs every two years for normal-risk patients and more frequently for high-risk patients.

BPE became mandatory after the training of a lot of dentists practising today. Accordingly, if a dentist has failed to update their training or simply failed to adapt to the changing duties of general

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