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Failed root canal, dentist has said will cost me £650 +

(13 Posts)
ijustwant8hours Sat 10-Nov-12 22:44:08

Hi, has anyone been in a similar situation or can anyone offer advice? I am a bit stuck as to what to do next....

I am an NHS patient with my dentist. I have a failed root canal, it isnt very painful, unless I prod it, but there is clearly infection there as I have a massive lump on my gum.

Dentist told me that it needs specialist treatment and she could 1. Refer me to Guys Hospital who might not take the case, 2. Refer me to a specialist which would cost £650+ or 3. One of their senior partners isnt a specialist but would have a go for £550+.

Guys have refused the case so now dentist says my only option is to pay. Is this right? She didnt mention extraction and I was too shell shocked to think straight, but presumably they could just take the tooth out?

I really can't afford that kind of money and it feels almost like I am being blackmailed!

CrikeyOHare Sun 11-Nov-12 09:30:47

WTF?

Whatever needs doing, no matter how specialist, CAN be done on the NHS - and you wouldn't be charged £650! An infection is a serious matter. Are you on antibiotics?

I would get a second opinion from another NHS dentist, OP. This all sounds very hmm.

HeartOfDixie Sun 11-Nov-12 09:41:57

Hi yes. I'm in the same situation. the costs sound about right but I would get a second opinion. as guys are mentioned are you Se London. Kings dental bit are very good but may be the same as guys as all hospitals seemed to have merged these days. My dentist offered me extraction, around £40 but they prefer not to as it loosens the security of the other teeth around it and can affect wearing on the teeth below. I agree if infection present you need to do something ASAP as untreated infection can be dangerous or turn into an absess (can't spell) and is the most painful thing I have ever experienced.

blondieminx Sun 11-Nov-12 09:43:00

Doesn't sound right to me either!

See your GP re the infection and ask for a referral to a consultant while you're there. smile hope it gets sorted soon.

maebyfunke Sun 11-Nov-12 09:47:16

Really you shouldn't have to pay more than £209 for a course of NHS treatment even if you need a crown.

What specialist treatment do they think you need?

Bearandcub Sun 11-Nov-12 09:57:03

Get a 2nd opinion or call your PCT/clinical commissioning group for your area for advice re charges.

AuntFini Sun 11-Nov-12 10:02:56

This happened to me this summer. Failed root canal with lump on gum, not especially painful unless I prodded lump.
Dentist did a second root canal on the tooth for band two cost and it's been fine ever since. His other suggestion was extraction if that had not worked. He knows I'd never have much money so maybe that's why he didn't suggest any private dentistry?
Contact your pct.

FushiaFernica Sun 11-Nov-12 10:03:22

Where abouts in your mouth is the tooth?
You need to go back to the dentist, not a gp, to get some antibiotics for the infection. When I had an infected tooth my dentist told me that occasionally after the antibiotics have worked the infection can disappear. That didn't work for me so I had the tooth extracted.

YouSeveredHead Sun 11-Nov-12 10:07:52

look here op

YouSeveredHead Sun 11-Nov-12 10:08:46

You may have been charged for private dental treatment if you agreed to have private dental work done. However, you should not be asked to pay private charges for any treatment that is clinically (medically) necessary. All treatment that your dentist says you need to keep your mouth, teeth and gums healthy and free of pain should be covered by NHS charges.
Most dentists provide both NHS and private treatment. Your NHS dentist should always: 
explain which treatments are available on the NHS 
explain which treatments are only available privately
make sure you know how much your NHS treatment and any private treatment will cost
NHS dental treatment
The NHS will provide all treatment that your dentist feels is clinically necessary to keep your teeth, gums and mouth healthy.
If your dentist says that you ‘need’ a particular type of treatment, it will be available on the NHS. You should not be asked to pay for it privately. For more information, see Which dental treatments are available on the NHS?

amarylisnightandday Sun 11-Nov-12 10:13:27

2nd opinion ASAP! I've had two root canals. 1st one was horrific and I reckon I could have sued. It got reinfected again couple of years later and I went to my new nhs dentist who told me he would try and fix it but that there might be more problems. He was brilliant and its been fine for 5 years now. He did say at the time I might need extraction etc but that he would try - paid off!
2nd one was done too by nice nhs dentist with no problems and about 1 million percent less pain. In my v humble opinion some dentists are just better than others so worth you getting looked at by someone toes before you cough up so much £

Willdoitinaminute Sun 11-Nov-12 13:19:36

Ask why the original root filling has failed & whether redoing it will be anymore successful. The dentist should discuss all options including extraction and do nothing. The specialist hospitals have set protocol on patient selection based on long term success of treatment. If they have not accepted you then ask your dentist why.

ijustwant8hours Sun 11-Nov-12 17:27:17

Thanks for all this, it is my first pre molar so quite near the front so I guess that there would be consequences of extraction.... I have had a course of antibiotics but the infection is still clearly there.

Guys refused to treat as they are oversubscribed, I am actually in Hertfordshire so it does seem a little odd that they are referring to Guys!

I don't really like or trust my dentist tbh, she always seems to very aggressively push the expensive hygienist and when I needed a crown I felt she was giving the private option a very hard sell! Also she speaks to me like I am an idiot and that puts my back up!

I will get another opinion and speak to the PCT.

Thanks again for all your input!

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