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A 16-year-old girl from Manchester has received £10,000 in damages after she had to have two teeth extracted because her dentist failed to spot that she was suffering from tooth decay.
Matilda Bruchard suffered months of pain before the teeth that were causing her problems were taken out. She was five years old when she first went for treatment at the practice. By the time she was nine, she already had some tooth decay and was given a filling in a back molar.
Although she attended for regular checkups, she developed sore gums and stabbing tooth pain that necessitated a return visit to the surgery. At this stage, her tooth was sealed and the dentist prescribed a toothpaste suitable for patients with sensitive teeth.
Still the pain continued. In April 2014, Matilda, by then aged 14, finally underwent an X-ray, which revealed extensive decay in the offending tooth. As she was also experiencing pain in one of her back teeth on the other side of her mouth, she requested a further X-ray, but was told that it could wait.
By the time Matilda sought the opinion of another dentist, she had no option but to have two of her back teeth removed as they could not be saved.
Not only did she experience unnecessary pain and suffering but the whole experience has left Matilda feeling self-conscious and lacking in confidence. She has also developed a fear of going to the dentist.
Unhappy at the treatment experienced by their daughter, Matilda's family sought legal advice and proceeded with a personal injury claim. Although the dentist concerned denied any liability, a compensation settlement was agreed and this has now been ratified by Manchester County Court.