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Woman has lived with a dentist’s drill lodged in her jaw for two years


A woman from Leamington Spa has had to live with a broken dentist’s drill in her jaw for the past two years after the instrument snapped off during a root canal treatment. Alison Southwood, 44, was left with the broken drill bit in her tooth for the extended period of time as a string of experts refused to remove it due to risks involved. Dental surgeons feared that trying to remove the drill would leave her with numbness in her face.

Alison told Mailonline ‘I can’t believe how much stress and misery has been caused by what should have been a simple operation.’ Although her mouth was numbed for the treatment, she said that it was obvious something had gone wrong and she explained that ‘a hush descended on the room and the dentist and dental nurse exchanged worried glances. They legged it out of the room for a private discussion. I was just left to lie there and wonder how there were going to break the news to me.’

The treated tooth has since started to decay and Alison faces having the molar extracted so that surgeons can reach and remove the drill. She added ‘It’s a race against time to get it out. If left for too long, the metal could cause a toxic reaction. It’s an absolutely terrifying thought.’

Alison received £5,500 in an out of court settlement from Genix Healthcare in Cirencester, following a sixteen month legal battle after the incident occurred in March 2013. A spokesperson for the company said ‘we are totally committed to ensuring the safety of our patients and the high quality of dental treatment and care provided.’

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