Don't Dance and Drill
We never had any idea that so many bizarre happenings were common in the dental field. But every week, we seem to come across another story that makes us do a double take and say “What now??” Today, we’re featuring a disco-loving dentist who probably should have picked a more appropriate time to get down with his bad self. Read on for the full story!
The year was 2004, and Brandy Fanning, who was 31 at the time, found herself at the Syracuse Community Health Center’s emergency clinic. She’d been suffering from discomfort in her left molar, which was increasing in intensity.
After ruling out a root canal as a treatment option, Dr. George Trusty gave her a shot of Novocain to numb the area before using a drill to break up the tooth for extraction.
Note that Novocaine is a local anesthetic — it doesn’t knock a patient out by any means. Therefore, when Dr. Trusty began “performing rhythmical steps and movements to the song `Car Wash,’” (which was playing on the radio, according to the lawsuit), Ms Fanning was, for better or for worse, forced to bear witness to it all.
At some point during the Dr.’s impromtu performance, Ms Fanning heard a snap. It turned out to be the the drill bit snapping off her in mouth. He attempted to remove the bit using a metal hook, but only succeeded in pushing the bit further up, driving it into the sinus and bone near her eye socket.
Dr. Trusty (a very unfortunate last name in this case, isn’t it?) first minimized the problem, but then told her to get to an emergency room immediately, although he did tell his patient that she would likely just sneeze it out. Unfortunately, the dentist couldn’t have been more wrong. In fact, had she actually sneezed, according to the emergency room doctors, the drill bit could have ended up in her eye, causing blindness or other damage.
Fanning filed suit against Dr. Trusty, asserting that the dentist failed to pay her medical bills from the mishap, and asking for $600,000 to cover her expenses, plus future medical costs associated with lingering effects of the botched procedure, and unspecified funds for pain and suffering.
Rest assured, our practice follows a strict “don’t dance and drill” policy. No matter how funky and fresh the office tunes may be at any given moment.