Fifty-year-old Roisin Mimnagh, has settled a €60,000 negligence claim against her former dentist for an undisclosed sum in the Circuit Civil Court following a treatment that she said left her afraid to smile.
Following the treatment Mrs Mimnagh told the Court that she had been horrified to find an incisor had been filed away without her permission and replaced with an amalgam or composite.
Mrs Mimnagh legal representative, David McParland, informed Judge Jacqueline Linnane that his client was someone who was generally happy with her appearance. She had attended Dr Anna O’Donovan, Griffith Avenue, Dublin, to have an incisor realigned. He said: “To her horror she afterwards found that her tooth had been filed away and replaced with an amalgam or composite that was smaller and shorter and different from her original tooth”.
Counsel for Dr O’Donovan, Barrister Sarah Corcoran, informed the Judge that her client had entered a full defence to Ms Mimnagh’s compensation claim. However they had admitted that written consent to the specific remedy for her tooth had not been received before the treatment took place. She added that the case before the court was not one of deciding liability but a matter of assessing damages.
Remedial work was completed in 2013 not long after the initial treatment. Mr McParland said Ms Mimnagh was still wearing an appliance on her tooth. Additionally a specialist told her that she would need further realignment work.
The judge was informed by Mr McPartland that his client initially believed she was going to have some white filling applied to her tooth to make it look straighter. She was very distressed when she later discovered it had been filed away and an amalgam or composite put on it. This left her afraid to smile.
Judge Linnane told the Court that she had examined the pleadings and had found that the latest expert report was more than three years old. Due to this she said that she would be unable to assess damages on the basis of outdated expert reports.
When Judge Linnane proposed talks about possibly settling the cas, she was informed by Ms Corcoran that Dr O’Donovan had always had “a significant willingness” to deal with the case. Following some talks Mr McParland informed the Judge that the case had been settled and could be struck out with an order for Ms Mimnagh;s legal costs to be taxed in default of agreement.
The amount of the settlement was not disclosed in court.