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Instead of healing wisdom tooth pain, dentist fractures jaw bone, fined

Source: , Posted On:   17 March 2021

Instead of healing wisdom tooth pain, Jalandhar dentist fractures jaw bone, fined

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, March 16

The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has directed a local dental clinic and a dentist to pay an amount of Rs 40,000 as compensation to a patient, whose jaw bone reportedly got fractured during a surgery for treatment of wisdom tooth pain.

Jyoti Gupta (37) of Hardeep Nagar lodged a complaint against Clove Dental Clinic, Model Town, and Dr Ajay Mohan, maxillofacial surgeon. She alleged that she developed a severe pain in her wisdom tooth and hence took medical advice from the doctor, who asked her to get X-ray from the hospital on August 30-31 in 2018. The doctor suggested surgery for which she deposited Rs 3,000 in the hospital.

On August 31, 2018, Dr Ajay Mohan conducted surgery ejaculating the wisdom tooth of the complainant and she was told that swelling and healing will take 72 hours and the stitches of the wound would be removed after 15 days and the same was accordingly done from the hospital.

However, the patient’s pain did not subside; swelling increased and mouth of the complainant became stiff. She alleged that it was hard to open and chewing became painful for her. In addition, the lower left side of the complainant particularly the chin, lips, tongue became very painful and numb and the life of the complainant became tough due to the surgery.

The patient said the doctor told him that since all organs were re-modelling, these will automatically get healed after approximately 15 days. The patient said when the pain became unbearable for her, she took opinion from other medical experts and surgeons of repute. She said she spent Rs600 for the scan of her mouth, which showed that the lower bone of the jaw on the left side was broken, while doing the surgery by the doctor. She took opinion of more doctors, who told her that not only did the bone get fractured, but the nerve of the jaw also got damaged and injured and the entire skull had developed severe pain. A scan was done again, which confirmed the nerve injury which further developed pain in the left ear and Dr Bowry, ENT specialist, opined that there was no problem in the left ear but due to injury to the nerve, the complainant had got severe pain.

The patient said she went to many doctors and spent about Rs1 lakh on medical opinion and scanning. She visited a doctor in Chandigarh and he said there was severe problem of paresthesia and that many teeth have virtually become dead and useless. She was also advised psychological treatment. The complainant said she was in a private job and was also raising her family and her two minor children aged about 14 years and 8 years, respectively. She said she could not go to her job and had become a liability on her husband, who, too, was forced to take many leaves from work. She sought a compensation of Rs18 lakh. The doctor was proceeded against ex-parte.

The commission with president Kuljit Singh and member Jyotsna observed: “When reasonable care, expected of the medical profession is not rendered, the same amounts to negligence. If doctor fails to perform his duty during treatment, then he is liable for medical negligence.”

They directed the hospital and the doctor to pay Rs40,000 as compensation for mental harassment and physical harassment faced by the complainant. The complainant is also entitled for Rs5,000 as the cost of litigation. The commission also ordered that Rs5,000 be deposited in the Legal Aid fund of the office.