Defendant dental practitioner failed to identify severe bone loss on x-rays in 1996 and refer Claimant to peridontist. Referral eventually made September 2001 when peridontist diagnosed cavities requiring filling. Peridontist sought that Defendant fill these cavities as a matter of urgency in October 2002 but treatment was not commenced by Defendant until December 2003 by which time the Claimant’s condition had deteriorated and root canal treatment was required.

Claimant alleged failure to arrange specialist referral and provide restorative treatment in a timely manner led to exacerbation of her periodontal disease and the requirement for root canal surgery. Defendant accepted that the bone loss shown on the x-rays should have resulted in a referral but denied causation on the basis that periodontal disease progresses slowly and further, the Claimant had failed to cease smoking despite being made aware of its deleterious effects to her dental health.

Out of court settlement: £7,500 (estimated General Damages £4,000).