<- Home <- Arhive <- Vol. 28, Issue 3, September 2020



Rom J Leg Med28(3)299-303(2020)
DOI:10.4323/rjlm.2020.299
© Romanian Society of Legal Medicine


THE DOCTOR-PATIENT RELATIONSHIP FACING THE MUTUAL ASSUMED RISK CONCERNING VERTICAL ROOT FRACTURE. A NARRATIVE REVIEW – PART 1

M. Chirilă, I. Suciu, S. M. Pituru, C. Funieru, L. Chirilă, B. Dimitriu, O. Amza


Abstract: Background. The vertical root fracture (VRF) is a longitudinal one starting and developing at dental root level. For a period of time diagnosis is presumptive, due to the nonspecific and moderate-intensity symptoms, confirmation requiring extraction of the tooth. Since loss of the tooth represents for both doctor and patient a treatment failure, the ensuing disappointment can be expressed in the form of claims with medico-legal issues.
Objective. To assess the doctor-patient relationship concerning the risks involved by vertical root fracture, starting from the etiology and diagnosis possibilities of such an occurrence. Materials and methods. In order to analyze this subject, several biomedical databases were inquired - PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, Cochrane Library - using combinations of terms appropriate to the subject.
Results. Endodontic treatment engenders dentin root alterations affecting the structure of the tooth as a whole thus increasing the susceptibility and risks of VRF development. In such circumstances the doctor-patient partnership can be severely shaken if the patient has not fully understood the risks and consequently exclusively attributes the failure to the doctor. In this relationship, the doctor’s communication skills are of paramount importance.
Conclusions. Awareness of the clinical and therapeutic factors that favor the occurrence of vertical root fractures by doctors and patients alike prevents the appearance of possible subsequent disagreements, informed consent playing the role of holding both the doctor and the patient accountable in order to prevent a possible accusation of malpractice.
Keywords: doctor-patient relationship, risk awareness, vertical root fracture, endodontic treatment



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