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Dental Malpractice Trigeminal Neuralgia

The majority of the time procedures done at your dentist or oral surgeon’s office goes without incident in Seattle, Kirkland, Bellingham, Olympia and across Washington State. However, on some occasions, the dentist or oral surgeon will make a mistake and injure the trigeminal neuralgia nerve.

Trigeminal Neuralgia Defined for Dental Malpractice

Trigeminal neuralgia is a nerve in your mouth. This nerve transmits feeling from your brain down to your face. If you are unfortunate enough to have this condition, which is called trigeminal neuralgia, you can feel horrific pain if your face if you do things like brush your teeth or even touch your face.

It is a terrible condition to have that will have a huge impact on your life. On the whole, this condition will affect women more than men, with people over the age of 50 who are affected. There are ways to treat this condition, including by doing surgery, injections, and prescribing certain medications. When you have this condition, there is a major disruption in the nerve’s function.

In most cases, the problem arises between a blood vessel and the trigeminal nerve at the base of the person’s brain, with the contact putting pressure on the nerve, which then causes problem. Surgical injuries are normally the reason for the injury, but aging can also be a factor as well.

Most trigeminal neuralgia is caused by some kind of trauma, which can, and often does, include a dental or oral surgery procedure gone wrong, whether that is a root canal or a wisdom tooth extraction that has gone wrong. It is very important to find out which nerve in the trigeminal nerve system was injured.

Dental Malpractice Neuralgia Symptoms

This is a very painful condition. Heat or cold can cause you to feel very severe pain in your face and jaw and the mouth area. The pain can also be like a very intense headache. You may feel pain at some points and numbness at other points, depending the circumstances of your case. No one case is the same. Some people feel a kind of crawling sensation across their face or a complete loss of feeling altogether. Other people feel a kind of “painful numbness,” which, medically speaking is called Anesthesia Dolorosa. This is a terrible condition and occurs when the nerve is badly damaged during a dental malpractice procedure. This is a terrible numb but painful feeling.

Common Causes for Trigeminal Neuralgia in Dental Malpractice Cases

There are three main reasons for trigeminal neuralgia when it occurs. The first most common reason is that it occurs during a root canal, which comes about because of an over-extension of a file or an overfill of material from the root canal. The second most common reason is when a tooth is extracted. The third most common reason is when a local anesthetic is applied to the area of the mouth that is going to be worked on—i.e. for a tooth extraction or root canal. There is a fourth less common reason and that is when any kind of surgery is done on the mouth.

Dental Malpractice Neuralgia Treatment Options

Unfortunately, the treatment options are not great if you have a legitimate case of trigeminal neuralgia. If you get into see the appropriate specialist quick enough, you can get surgery done to repair the nerve or at least reduce pressure on it. There is procedure that can also stop pain signals that are transmitted to the brain. This procedure is not successful 100% of the time, however, and in fact, there could be an increase in the level of numbness and/or pain you are feeling. Short of surgery, then all you can do is take some kind of medication. The most common are:

  • Gabapentin
  • Tegretol
  • Neurontin
  • Trileptal
How The Jackman Law Firm Can Help

The Jackman Law Firm has successfully negotiate with many insurance companies for dentists and oral surgeons to make sure you our clients receive settlements that reflect what they have been through because of their injuries. Legally, you are allowed to recover money for medical bills, past and future, pain and suffering, lost wages, and any out of pocket expenses you might have spent during your recovery.

This is not to say this will be easy because it likely will not be. It is extremely rare for the insurance company for the dentist to admit that they did anything wrong no matter how obvious the negligence or error may seem. They often claim that this kind of risk is simply inherent in the consent form. This may or may not be true. Regardless of whether you did or did not, you still have to prove that the dentist or oral surgeon was negligent, which requires an expert to do this.

The Jackman Law Firm has the experts from previous cases to do this. If we cannot come to an agreement out of court with the insurance company, then we will go forward to trial with your case. We will be diligent and professional in our approach.

If you have questions about your case, feel free to call us.

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