A Florida woman has filed a dental malpractice lawsuit against her oral surgeon because he left the inch-long burr from a drill bit in her mouth. The burr eventually traveled up into the woman’s right maxillary sinus, causing her excruciating pain and causing tingling and numbness for almost a year.
The woman, Donna Delgado, 35, originally visited the oral surgeon, Ralph Eichstaedt in August of 2008. At the first appointment Eichstaedt recommended that Delgado have two decaying teeth pulled, and she returned two weeks later to have the procedure performed.
Eichstaedt used the drill bit burr to separate the two teeth in order to extract them more easily. However, the burr became detached from the drill bit and unknown to the surgeon or patient became lost in Delgado’s head.
After the procedure Delgado complained of dizziness and numbness on her right side, where unbeknownst to her the burr was lodged in her sinus. She also suffered from nosebleeds and sinus infections. According to her attorney, when she complained to the oral surgeon’s practice she was discharged, told the sensations were normal, and to “get over it”.
Nearly a year later she sought emergency treatment for the numb feeling from St. Joseph’s Hospital, and upon performing a magnetic scan doctors discovered the burr lodged inside her sinus. The burr was surgically removed, and surgeons remarked that she was lucky that she was not killed.