BELLEVILLE - A St. Clair County woman who underwent a dental procedure to extract her four wisdom teeth alleges it was done without her consent and resulted in debilitating health issues.
Crystal Kennedy filed a medical malpractice suit Oct. 4 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against dentist Dr. Reza Movahed, his MId America Oral Surgery in O'Fallon, and a dental assistant, or nurse, identified only as Jane Doe. Neither the surgery nor Movahed returned a call and message from the Record requesting comment.
In September 2017, according to the suit, Kennedy approached the dentist and surgery to carry out the extraction of her four wisdom teeth. But prior to the procedure taking place, the plaintiff says she spoke of her concerns to the dental assistant about going ahead with the extraction of the teeth.
Kennedy alleges the assistant went ahead and gave the plaintiff general anesthetics without addressing the concerns. Kennedy stated she was unconscious and did not officially consent to the removal.
The complaint notes that Wesley Kennedy, the plaintiff's boyfriend at the time, signed an informed consent form but had no legal right to do so.
It is alleged Movahed went ahead with the manual extraction without knowing that sensitive nerves, including the trigeminal, were too close to one of Crystal Kennedy's teeth for non-complex removal.
The dentist is further accused of using an "overly aggressive, improper technique," damaged the nerves, performed the procedure without consent, and "negligently and carelessly failed to properly inform the plaintiff of all the risks." The dentist also did not promptly refer Kennedy to a specialist to treat the nerve damage, it is alleged.
Jane Doe, the assistant, allegedly failed to obtain informed consent and did not address Kennedy's concerns prior to administering general anesthesia.
Kennedy, the lawsuit states, has suffered permanent damage to her trigeminal nerve, has needed further dental and neurological treatment and suffers from "constant debilitating migraines, dizziness and vertigo."
Further, the suit states she has faced medical expenses for "hospitals, medicines, dental supplies, x-rays, dentists, neurologists, and oral surgeons," and has missed work and lost wages.
"Multiple doctors have confirmed that plaintiff's diagnosis is trigeminal neuralgia, a significantly more serious and permanent nerve damage condition due to the wisdom tooth extraction," the complaint alleges.
The plaintiff alleges Movahed "engaged in acts of concealment" by playing down the full extent of the nerve damage following the procedure.
Kennedy seeks damages of more than $50,000 to prevent similar conduct by other dentists, court costs, attorney fees and all appropriate relief. She is represented by attorney Edward C. Kruse of the Kruse Law Firm of St. Louis.
St. Clair County Circuit Court Case number 2019-L-720.