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South African Dental Journal

versión On-line ISSN 0375-1562
versión impresa ISSN 0011-8516


SYKES, LM; GRAY, B; MOSTERT, V  y  DU PLESSIS, F. Pre-empting and preventing iatrogenic oral trauma: A case report. S. Afr. dent. j. [online]. 2022, vol.77, n.7, pp.423-427. ISSN 0375-1562.

In keeping with the principles of autonomy, beneficence, and non-maleficence, no dental treatment should be commenced prior to carrying out all the requisite preparatory stages. This includes a thorough initial assessment, establishing an accurate diagnosis, drawing up a list of possible treatment options, presenting these to the patient, and allowing them to make an autonomous and educated decision. This should be followed with the formulation of a structured and carefully considered treatment plan.This case illustrates a case of iatrogenically induced damage suffered by a patient where unplanned treatment was carried out with no consideration of the possible immediate, short term or long terms outcomes. It stresses the need for dentists to consider and pre-empt the consequences of their treatment (or lack there-of) and formulate the best possible plan for each patient. It also needs to be stressed that the proposed management plan must be informed by the principle of 'shared decision making' wherein the patient assumes part of the responsibility and accountability in the decisions taken. The ultimate aim of any plan must be to promote the best possible outcome for the patient (beneficence), and as far as possible prevent iatrogenically induced harm (non-maleficence).

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