Dentist pays out £13k after woman, 75, left ‘unable to eat anything but soup’

A pensioner has been paid £13,000 in an out of court settlement after allegedly being left “unable to eat anything but soup” following dental treatment, a claim the dentist denies.

Vivienne Dixon, 75, claimed she was left with excruciating pain after having four implants fitted by Dr Chris Branfield at Castle Park Dental Care in Cottingham, Yorkshire.

The dentist agreed to pay £13,000 but did not admit liability, reported HullLive.

Vivienne claimed it was decided she should have four implants and a temporary bridge in treatment that meant having six teeth removed.

But following the procedure, Vivienne alleged she started experiencing intense headaches, and went back to the practice a week later to be given strong painkillers and was reassured the implants were fine.

Her situation did not improve and she remained in pain.

“I decided to go to the doctors for a check-up and was informed that I was experiencing a dry socket infection where a blood clot either doesn’t form or is dislodged after tooth removal. The bones and nerves in my mouth were exposed and that was what was causing me so much pain,” she said.

Mrs Dixon was given antibiotics but this wasn’t enough to solve the problems.

“My implants had to be removed because the pain was so severe that I was unable to eat. I was suffering and losing a lot of weight as a result,” she said, while later going back to Castle Park Dental Care and having further treatment that allegedly had painful results.

“About a week after this implant was installed, I was at my best friend’s funeral and out of nowhere my mouth started bleeding uncontrollably. I went to the practice immediately and spoke to a colleague of Dr Branfield who told me I needed the implant removed again,” said Mrs Dixon.

“The whole procedure was incredibly painful again and I was worried at the amount of money that all of these treatments had cost me.”

She continued: “I seemed to be having more problems with my teeth since having the implant treatment but I was always reassured that the treatment I was having was suitable so I had the bridge fitted.”

Mrs Dixon says she then tried to see Dr Branfield for a further appointment as, despite the bridge, her teeth were still causing her discomfort.

But she claims that she could not get an appointment with him.

She said: “I felt as though he had washed his hands with me and went to the practice, where I was advised that my diet wasn’t soft enough. It was at that point I lost it because all I was eating was soup.

“Two months later my bridge was fracturing and I was sending photos into the practice which were being ignored. It really seemed like they didn’t want anything more to do with me.”

It was at that point that Mrs Dixon sought a different opinion and contacted the Dental Law Partnership for help.

Analysis of her dental records revealed that Dr Branfield had allegedly failed to properly assess and advise Mrs Dixon, that she should not have had implants placed due to poor bone levels, and that the bridgework was also inadequate.

Tim Armitage of the Dental Law Partnership, who represented Mrs Dixon, reported HullLive, commented: “The distress and pain our client has experienced was completely unnecessary. If the dentist had carried out adequate treatment in the first place, her problems could have been avoided.”