The defense will argue the following:
1) the lingual nerve was injured during the administration of the local anesthetic for the extraction of the third molar (mandibular block) and not the extraction and that this is an unavoidable risk of a mandibular block . This argument is a more effective argument in cases of paresthesia (incomplete severing of the lingual nerve), than with complete anesthesia (complete severance of the lingual nerve), given the width of the bevel tipped syringe needle and the width of the nerve at the location of the mandibular block;
2) the general dentist is experienced in performing extractions and there was no need to refer the plaintiff to an oral surgeon or alternatively, the dentist did refer the plaintiff to an oral surgeon (but failed to record this fact in the dental records), but plaintiff chose not to spend the extra money for the oral surgeon to extract the tooth;
3) the plaintiff signed a written consent acknowledging the risks of nerve injury, etc. If there is no written consent, the defense will argue that plaintiff was orally informed of the risk, whether the dental chart confirms this or not;
4) the dentist performed an excellent textbook extraction, using appropriate technique for the subject third molar. Bad things just happen;
5) the subject extraction appeared from the diagnostic workup by the treating dentist to be an uncomplicated extraction;
6) the plaintiff has an incomplete injury to the lingual nerve and the symptoms of anesthesia, paresthesia, dysesthesia will resolve in time (certainly after the jury verdict). When there has been no change in the patient's anesthesia, paresthesia, dysesthesia after 1 year, the defense expert who claims that it is probable that the patient's symptoms will resolve after the jury verdict, or continue to improve is taking a position that is not supportable in the dental literature.