Ireland: Young woman awarded €77k in damages for bad dentistry - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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Ireland Young woman awarded €77k in damages for bad dentistry

17:15  15 november  2019
17:15  15 november  2019 Source:   extra.ie

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Awarding a total € 77 ,750, Mr Justice Hanna said the treatment was “entirely inappropriate”. He said Ms O’Gorman underwent pain and discomfort and In evidence, Ms O’Gorman had told her counsel David McGrath SC she went to the defendant dentist when school friends told her of a € 2,300 braces deal.

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a woman wearing a hat © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland A young woman has been awarded €77,000 in damages after ‘substandard and inappropriate’ dental work almost caused her teeth to fall out.

The High Court heard Sarah O’Gorman, now 23, had been in her sixth year of secondary school when she decided to see dentist Riyadh Emara about her concerns that she had crooked teeth.

Judge Michael Hanna said the resulting treatment had caused her pain and trauma ‘well over and above and beyond what she should have experienced’.

Ms O’Gorman, from Captains Road, Dublin 2, said school friends had recommended the dentist, at Canal View Dental Surgery, Grove Road, Rathmines, Dublin 6. The young woman, who is now a clerical officer at St James’s Hospital, said the dentist was offering braces for a cheaper-than-usual rate of €2,300.

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a train crossing a bridge over a river © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

She said she had asked his advice about treatment options, and agreed to pay the fee for the braces to be fitted to her lower and upper teeth in late November 2013.

During the course of the treatment, the dentist attempted to align a canine tooth in the upper right of her mouth, the court heard.

The braces were not removed, and in October 2016, Ms O’Gorman had sought a second opinion, having felt that her teeth were beginning to move.

She told the court: ‘The roots of my teeth were so sore, and I could feel a clicking noise from the root of my teeth.

a woman walking down a street © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

‘I thought my teeth were going to fall out if I bit into something hard.’ Ms O’Gorman said that specialist orthodontist Dr George Takla, at St James’s Hospital, had taken advice from other specialists, and that they had all concluded that the braces should be removed immediately.

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She said: ‘When the braces were taken off, they said they weren’t going to touch my teeth for six to eight months, because they thought they were going to [otherwise] fall out.’ She said the new orthodontist also arranged for a difficult wisdom tooth to be removed – a job she said Mr Emara had tried to do but failed, leaving her in extreme pain, with a mouth full of blood. The cost of having a new set of braces fitted was €3,500, she said, and she had been told that she could need a tooth implant, costing €1,950.

As well as the pain she had suffered, she told the court that her general anxiety levels had increased, she feared that people were staring at her teeth, and she had begun to suffer from panic attacks.

Judge Hanna noted that Mr Emara had not responded to any contact from the plaintiff’s legal team. He said a judgment against Mr Emara, of negligence, had been recorded in October this year, in the absence of any defence from the dentist.

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The case therefore came before the court for an assessment of the damages due to Ms O’Gorman.

a castle with water in front of a building © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Judge Hanna said the specialists had agreed that remedial action to fix Ms O’Gorman’s teeth would always have been a complex procedure, and should never have been attempted by a general dental practitioner.

She should have been referred from the start to a qualified orthodontist, he said.

‘That was not done, and the consequences of that have been very unpleasant,’ he said.

He said Ms O’Gorman had found the entire experience ‘tremendously traumatic and painful’.

He added: ‘She must deal every day with the public, and she is entitled to be concerned about her appearance, as we all are.’ He said Ms O’Gorman now had a good prospect of a successful outcome for her teeth from her new orthodontist, despite the ‘substandard and entirely inappropriate’ treatment she had received from Mr Emara. He noted that she had ‘a beautiful smile’.

Judge Hanna said he would award Ms Emara €50,000 for her pain and suffering to date, €20,000 for her future pain, €7,750 to cover the cost of her treatments, and her legal costs.

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