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Dentistry/Fair dental treatment?


Almost 1 year ago to the day I had an amalgam filling (on #3) replaced with a resin filling by my dentist, to my knowledge there was nothing wrong with the amalgam filling with the exception of this is no longer the standard of care. Well to replace the filling the dentist had to drill deeper than he had expected. Immediately after the filling I experienced pain and sensitivity with that tooth for about 2 months before I decided that was not part of 'normal recovery' for a filling. I contacted my dentist who recommended that if the pain persisted I should come in to have my bite adjusted, which I eventually did and it did nothing. Fast forward to June, I was still experiencing pain  and extreme sensitivity at my normal check up when the dentist readjusted my bite yet again to resolve my complaints. Still nothing. In the middle of July I went back due to the pain when the dentist brought up the idea of a possible root canal. By this point the pain was excruciating and I was beginning to experience neurological symptoms of what I later found out to be a consequence of a severe infection diagnosed by the endodontist; it was so severe we had to push back my root canal 1.5wks to give the keflax some time to clear up the infection. The infection was still present at the time of my root canal, and required a 2nd round of antibiotics. I was told that the need for a root canal (and the accompanying infection) was likely due to the deep drilling that occurred in January. So now I am finally getting the final crown done by the original dentist, but this entire process used all of my 2012 benefits, and now already all of my 2013 dental benefits plus more than $1300 out of pocket (including being charged twice for a core buildup as my dentist charged me for it in both September 2012 and January 2013). have been told that since this entire experience was the result of a mistake of the dentist himself the practice should have covered the expenses/provide their services at no charge, or at least provide services at a reduced cost, but that has not been the case for me. This has been a very frustrating, painful and incredibly costly experience for me and I'd really like to know if I was treated fairly? I feel like this was unethical treatment, but I don't know if this is typically what happens or not. I would sincerely appreciate any thoughts you might have. Thank you in advance!

I do not believe in replacing servicable amalgam fillings, I have heard stories like yours a thousand times.  So, whose bright idea was this and who told you working on an asymtomatic tooth was the standard of care?

That being said, nerves can die after even minor procedures and obviously yours did.  I would be critical of your dentist for not sending you to the Endodontist sooner.  The infection you had was a serious one, people die from them sometimes.

I would think if your dentist had a brain he would give you the crown at no charge.  If he does not offer, I would send him a certified letter and tell him you will file a complaint to the state board.  Then do it.  And get the name of a new dentist from your Endodontist.


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Crystal Baxter DMD< MDS


Dental malpractice issues, Prosthodontics. Geraitric dentistry, complications from dental treatment including nerve damage, TMJ, brain abscess, infections, sinus perforations, fatalities.


30 years of dental practice, 17 years teaching, University of Illinois, and Northwestern University. National lecture series on dental implants and treatment planing, 18 years as dental expert witness in dental leagl issues.

14 publications, see CV on website.

see credentials at Includes, graduate of University of Pittsburgh, DMD, certificate of Prosthodontics, Masters of Dental Science, certificate of Geriatric Dentistry.

Awards and Honors
National lecturer, various TV and radio spots including CNN and interviews by Debra Norville.

Past/Present Clients
National expert witness experience, plaintiff, defense, and personal injury.

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