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Case Study

DEFECTIVE BRIDGEWORK CAUSES LOCAL WOMAN MONTHS OF AGONY

• 50-year-old Caroline Walker suffered months of excruciating pain and now requires extensive corrective treatment
• £5,000 awarded in compensation

 

Mrs Caroline Walker, a 50-year-old project officer from Hounslow, West London, has been awarded £5,000 in compensation from her local dentist with the help of specialist dental negligence solicitors the Dental Law Partnership.

Mrs Walker visited Dr Yuvraaj Shah at Whitton Corner Dental Practice, Twickenham, West London, between August 2015 and December 2016.

“Dr Shah extracted a tooth in 2015,” Mrs Walker said. “I wasn’t happy living with a gap in my teeth so Dr Shah recommended fitting a bridge to fill the space left by the extraction. I thought it would be a routine procedure, so I went to see him in October 2016 to begin the process.

“This is when things started to go wrong. First, Dr Shah injected my mouth several times to try and numb it, but none of the injections seemed to work. He then started ‘preparing’ my teeth and gums for the bridge which was agony. I was screaming because the pain was so unbearable. Dr Shah just led me to believe the pain was a normal part of the process,” she continued.

Still suffering from the pain of the initial procedure, Mrs Walker returned to Dr Shah to have the bridge itself fitted a few weeks later in November.

“When the bridge was fitted it was unbearably painful,” Mrs Walker recalled. “It was excruciating. I couldn’t sleep or do everyday things because of the constant pain. I was experiencing shooting pains across my whole face. It was awful. I went back to see Dr Shah and told him how painful the bridge was, but he just prescribed antibiotics and said it was normal to experience pain soon after a bridge had been fitted. He told me it would subside in the near future.”

But the pain didn’t subside, and Mrs Walker was soon back with Dr Shah. The dentist adjusted the bridge and prescribed more antibiotics. None of this made any difference and Mrs Walker’s agony continued.

“By December 2016 I’d had enough and refused to see Dr Shah again,” Mrs Walker said. “I saw a different dentist who immediately indicated there were problems with my bridge. It quickly became clear Dr Shah just hadn’t fit it properly, which was why it was so painful.”

Mrs Walker contacted the Dental Law Partnership. Analysis of her dental records revealed that Dr Shah had indeed failed to prepare for and adequately fit her bridge, which led to the pain she experienced.

“The whole ordeal was a nightmare,” Mrs Walker said. “I still can’t bear to think about it. I am still too traumatised to have the corrective treatment I need. And it’s all because Dr Shah wasn’t doing his job properly.”

Amanda Pietrusiak of the Dental Law Partnership commented: “The distress and pain our client experienced was unnecessary. It is our client’s position that if the dentist had carried out adequate treatment in the first place, her problems could have been avoided.”

The Dental Law Partnership took on Mrs Walker’s case in 2017. The case was successfully settled in 2019 when the dentist paid £5,000 in an out of court settlement. The dentist did not admit liability.