Quintessence Int 41 (2010), No. 10 6. Oct. 2010
Objective: Errors made by clinicians in dental practice require changes in the original planning of patient management. The purpose of this study was to analyze events that led to wrong tooth extraction.
Method and Materials: A total of 54 insurance claims for wrong tooth extractions were reported and evaluated by Medical Consultants International from 1993 to 2004. Data were collected and analyzed according to parameters regarding the clinician who performed the procedure, the nature of the referral for extraction, the demographics of the patient, the venue in which the extraction took place, the reason for the error, and the nature of the insurance claim.
Results: General practitioners performed 72% of the extractions, 49% of the referring clinicians were orthodontists, 74% of the errors were made during extraction, and 77% of the errors were made in polyclinics.
Conclusions: Errors during treatment and poor communication among clinicians led to extraction of the wrong teeth. This can be avoided by greater caution on the part of the extracting clinician when following the treatment plan. Guidelines toward this end are recommended.
Keywords: tooth extraction, treatment error, wrong tooth extraction