BATTERY BY DENTISTRY 
Thursday, July 24, 2014, 08:31 PM
Posted by Administrator
Battery, a crime under English common law....as well as a tort: a reason to sue for damages....is simply a touching that is not consented to. By standing at a crowded bar, we implicitly consent to being gently pushed aside by someone behind us needing to sidle up to the bar and get the bartender's attention....and a drink. But, no matter how crowded the bar....the concert....the supermarket....the bus, we don't consent to being punched upside the head, shoved violently down the aisle, or grabbed by the butt.

Today, I consented to a local oral surgeon shooting my mouth up with novocaine and then pounding, grinding and cracking the remains of a broken tooth (way in the back....does not interfere with my good looks) out of my mouth. I indicated my consent by opening my mouth and acknowledging that the needle he held in his hand was about to be jammed into my gums ("You'll feel a pinch." ......I benefitted, also, from learning a new definition for "pinch").

But, before he began the work of pulverizing the tooth and ripping out the remains and, as my mouth became sufficiently numb, his assistant handed me an Informed Consent Form. In medical procedures, the law says, the patient needs to be informed of the risks he/she is running by getting involved in the whole business of treatment for the consent to be effective. In other words, if you aren't warned the dentist might break your jaw...and he or she breaks it....you can sue for battery because without Informed Consent to the touching, the touching is a battery....

...whether or not it is medical/dental malpractice as well.

The good news (gleaned from the Informed Consent form) was that my jaw didn't break; a piece of tooth-root that would have needed significant surgery to remove wasn't left behind; a nerve was not disturbed leaving my face partially paralyzed for the short term, medium term, or (in rare cases) permanently; no entry was made into my sinus; and, best of all, I did not go so far South that the oral surgeon (Rolf Wolfrom) was required to do whatever he believed ought to be done to save my bacon.
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