Tooth broken during hernia surgery?

by A
(Winter Park, Florida)

I had hernia surgery at a hospital on November 11th, 2013. After the surgery I noticed that my front tooth was broken almost in half. I started calling the medical team that was there for my surgery to tell them about my tooth being broke during surgery. I only got one call back from a lady named Lynette from the medical group.

I went to see my dentist and he agreed that the tooth was broken due to the trauma of my surgery and faxed the medical group a letter. I continued to call the medical group about my tooth and nobody would call me back. Then I got a letter after Christmas, dated December 27th saying they apologize for my dental problem but would not pay to have it fixed.

I keep calling them and I still get no returned calls. What can I do? Is there any way to have the medical group that did this to my tooth pay to have it fixed?

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Tooth broken during hernia surgery?":

A (Winter Park, Florida):

It’s hard to believe a dentist could be so sure your tooth was broken during surgery. That’s a real stretch. Without his being present during surgery, it’s unlikely his opinion has much of a basis to it. While he certainly would be able to speculate about the cause of your dental injury, being absolutely sure is impossible.

Since the medical group had already decided not to take responsibility for your injury you may have no choice but to seek a legal remedy. You can certainly file a small claims lawsuit. In the State of Florida the jurisdictional limit - the maximum amount a person can sue for - is $5,000.

While you can file a small claims lawsuit, you still will run into the problem of proving the medical group was negligent, and that their negligence was the direct and proximate cause of your dental injury. You'll be better off speaking with a personal injury attorney. Most don’t charge for initial office consultations. Sometimes a letter alone from attorney is enough to prompt a settlement.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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