Lawsuit claims Skokie dentist dropped tool down man’s throat
By Luke Wilusz Sun-Times Media August 6, 2013 7:38PM
Updated: September 8, 2013 6:21AM
A man is suing a Skokie dentist who allegedly dropped a metal instrument down his throat, causing the device to get stuck in his stomach.
Bernard Bell on Monday filed a lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court that claims medical malpractice by dentist Toni Ellis Wolf and her business, Old Orchard Smiles.
According to the suit, Wolf was performing dental work on Bell on Nov. 8, 2012, when she dropped a metal dental driver down his throat, and it lodged in his stomach.
Bell, who lives in the north suburbs, was at the dental office for “installation of anchors for transplant teeth,” said his attorney, Raphael Strzelecki of RDS Law Offices in Skokie.
The suit states that Bell had to undergo several procedures, including X-rays, a CT scan and two endoscopies to remove the dental tool from his stomach.
“Nobody walks into a dental office and expects to walk out with a dental tool in their stomach,” Strzelecki said.
According to the suit, Bell experienced “pain in his throat and esophagus, and sleeplessness, irritability and general discomfort prior to and immediately after removal of the subject dental tool.”
The suit states that Wolf should have taken certain precautions, such as tying dental floss around the dental driver to retrieve it in case it fell or placing gauze in his mouth to keep anything from falling down his throat to prevent the tool from entering his stomach.
The two-count suit charges Wolf and Old Orchard Smiles with medical malpractice and negligence and seeks more than $50,000 in damages.
A representative for Wolf or Old Orchard Smiles could not be reached Tuesday for comment about the suit.