Brooklyn Jury Awards $5M Against Dentist Who Caused Patient's Brain Infection/Craniotomy

On June 23, 2022, I was fortunate in obtaining a $5,000,000 verdict in a dental malpractice action from a Brooklyn jury following a three week trial. The patient (then 58 years old) sought treatment from the dentist after an oral surgeon extracted an upper right molar which left a hole (fistula) between the maxillary sinus and oral cavity. As can be expected, this fistula or communication with the oral cavity led to an infection in the maxillary sinus. As per the dentist, pus was leaking into the patient's mouth from the sinus and the patient complained of one sided facial pain below his right eye. The dentist thought it would be a good idea to flush out the sinus cavity using a liquid medication called Chlorhexadine. This prescription medication was only approved by the FDA for topical use as a mouthwash.

On each of three visits over 10 days, the dentist injected chlorhexadine and saline through the patient's   fistula into the maxillary sinus to flush out pus. The dentist knew there was a risk of irritation from the use of Chlorhexadine (11.6% alcohol content) and admittedly did not discuss the risks with his patient or disclose that the FDA had never approved the use of this product to irrigate the sinuses. Three days after the third injection, the patient's severe right sided facial pain spread to above his right eye indicating the maxillary sinus infection had extended to the frontal sinus. A few days later he developed a brain abscess or empyema with stroke like symptoms. An emergency craniotomy to evacuate the infection was required to save the patient's life. The trial featured dueling experts in dentistry, infectious disease, neurology and otolaryngology. The jury found that the dentist had departed from accepted standards of dental care on each of the three visits and failed to obtain a proper informed consent - all of which led to the brain infection. John Doe v Boris Pikman, DDS, (Sup. Ct. Kings County, Index No.      ).

Ronald C. Burke, Esq

Trial Attorney with 30+ Years of Experience Attorney Ronald C. Burke, Esq. has more than 30 years of experience and has focused his career on representing clients in cases involving personal injury, medical malpractice and legal malpractice. He is a seasoned trial lawyer and has won many seven-figure settlements and verdicts for his clients over the years, including many case victories listed among the largest in the history of the New York State. He has been featured in the news and is a regular lecturer for the New York County Lawyers Association, as well as having lectured before the New York State Bar Association. Ron is also an attorney with Kelner & Kelner, a New York personal injury law firm. Awards and Accolades Mr. Burke's awards and accolades are many. Among them, he has been included in New York Super Lawyers® each year since 2010, and he has received the highest-possible AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®. Verdict Search, a part of the New York Law Journal, frequently recognizes his notable successes after winning some of the highest settlements and verdicts in past years. He was also featured in their list of the "Top New York Verdicts " and "Top New York Settlements." He is a member of the New York State Bar Association and is licensed to practice law in the U.S. District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, as well as before the United States Supreme Court. When Attorney Burke is not handling legal malpractice cases, he is highly involved in the local community. He was a member of the Village of Rockville Centre Volunteer Fire Department, has served on the local school board and as Chairman of the local Zoning Board. Learn more about Attorney Burke and how he can skillfully handle your malpractice case by contacting the Law Offices of Ronald C. Burke, Esq. right away to schedule your complimentary case evaluation. Our firm is here to help! Contact a New York Legal Malpractice Attorney Our firm provides each client's case with thorough preparation and aggressive representation, ensuring that you win the best possible results for your case whether it is settled or goes to trial. As a seasoned trial lawyer, Mr. Burke can provide the strong and relentless representation you need to establish negligence in a legal malpractice case and to recover any damages you may have suffered. Our firm can recover compensation for pre-trial and trial malpractice, violations of fee arrangements, loss of income, pain and suffering, and much more. Contact us today!


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