Dental Emergency Room Near Me

If you’ve ever had a dental emergency, you know just how stressful and painful it can be. But what happens when a routine visit to the dentist ends in a trip to the emergency room, or worse, the death of a patient? ABC 15 Investigators have spent months looking into the frequency of medical complications during dental procedures involving anesthesia. What they found is alarming.

Dental Emergency Room Near Me
Dental Emergency Room Near Me

Lack of Regulations and Oversight

State regulators are being accused of letting dentists keep their licenses even after a patient dies in their care. Take, for example, the case of Charlotte Emmons, a 77-year-old mother of five. She went to a dental office in October 2019 to have teeth extracted for dentures. Little did she know that this routine procedure would have devastating consequences.

During the procedure, Charlotte was given a lethal dose of anesthesia. She never regained consciousness and passed away 10 days later. Her daughter, Teresa, is now suing the dentist, Dr. Easton Porche Rozzi, and the nurse anesthetist, Tory Richmond. The lawsuit alleges that her mother’s death could have been prevented and should have never happened in a dental office.

An investigation by the Arizona State Dental Board revealed that the procedure should never have taken place in the first place. The dentist lacked the proper permit and did not conduct a pre-anesthesia administration exam. Shockingly, this is not an isolated case. ABC 15 Investigators found 50 cases where emergency medical services were called for patients under anesthesia since 2018. Out of those cases, 32 were dismissed by the board, and at least 7 patients died.

Lack of Accountability

What’s even more concerning is that none of the dentists involved had their licenses revoked. Even when the board found deviations from the standard of care or unprofessional conduct, the dentists received only minor forms of discipline. In some cases, they were required to take continuing education classes or had their license suspended temporarily. This lack of accountability is a cause for serious concern.

Dr. Anthony Caputo, Chair of the board’s investigative committee, insists that the board takes discipline seriously. However, the data shows a different story. Medical negligence attorney Scott Eldridge points out that the dental board, made up mainly of dentists and hygienists, is lax when it comes to discipline. When it comes to public safety, there needs to be a stronger emphasis on holding dentists accountable for their actions.

Ensuring Dental Procedures Are Safe

If you have a dental procedure coming up that requires anesthesia, there are steps you can take to ensure your safety. Firstly, ask your dentist who will be administering the anesthesia and inquire about their qualifications and experience. Have they had any adverse occurrences following anesthesia? It’s important to be proactive and advocate for your own well-being.

The risks of performing procedures under general anesthesia in a dental office are often overlooked by the public. The frequency of complications is similar to what happens in medicine, and it’s vital for patients to be aware of this. While the majority of procedures done in dental offices are safe, cases like Charlotte Emmons’ highlight the need for stricter regulations and more stringent oversight.

To learn more about dental procedures and patient safety, visit Make You Smile’s website.

Dental Emergency

Remember, your health and well-being should always be a priority. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek second opinions when it comes to your dental care. By being informed and proactive, you can help ensure that your dental procedures are as safe as possible.