Medicolegal Issues in Delayed Referral of a Patient with Oral Cancer by a Dentist: A Case Report

(Pages: 1-5)

Francesca Zangari

Private Practice of Dentistry and Forensic Odontology, Ravenna, Italy




Abstract: The author presents a case of malpractice litigation initiated by a female patient with an oral cancer as result of allegations concerning its diagnosis, dealing with the delicate role of the dentist, who, underestimating the early intraoral symptoms reported by her, delays appropriate diagnostic investigations then revealed a current neoplastic disease. Through the description of the legal proceedings, the evaluation criteria that distinguish the civil and criminal trial are analyzed; moreover, the important role that the dentist takes in the prevention and early detection of oral cancer is emphasized.

Keywords: : Oral cancer, early detection, awareness, malpractice, professional liability.