Case Study – Patient X v. Dr. Y [2012] MLJ 467

Dento Law Case Study 1

In this case, the plaintiff, X sued the defendant, Dr. Y, a consultant oral maxillofacial surgeon for breach of professional duty of confidence.



X had sought treatment for the defendant, Dr. Y, for dental implants carried out by another dentist, Dr. Z. He claimed that the implants were causing pain. Dr. Y examined X and informed him that nothing could be done as the implants had been placed. After a while, X returned to Dr. Y’s clinic seeking a referral to a specialist implantologist, but again the defendant offered no assistance & handed over the OPG which was taken during Dr. X’s first visit.

X alleged that Dr. Y prepared and issued a dental report without consent, which was disclosed to a third party, Dr. Z. X is seeking RM 1,000,000, claiming that the report was intended to jeopardize their legal claim against Dr. Z.



The court ruled in favor of the plaintiff regarding the breach of professional duty of confidence. The defendant made conclusions and findings about the plaintiff’s dental condition, which the court deemed confidential. As a result, the plaintiff’s claim was accepted and the defendant was ordered to pay RM 25,000 in general damages.



This dental malpractice case study serves as a stark reminder of the potential risks and liabilities that dental professionals may encounter during their careers. While the pursuit of excellence and unwavering commitment to patient care should always be at the forefront of a dentist’s practice, it is also essential to recognize the importance of protecting one’s career and financial security.

In the ever-evolving landscape of dentistry, an indemnity protection plan is a prudent choice for those who seek to practice with confidence, resilience, and a commitment to the highest standards of patient care. We encourage all dental professionals to explore the protection plans available and make informed decisions to protect your future.


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