• Dentistry

    New Jersey Dentist Patrick Bamgboye Investigated After Second Child Dies in His Care

    I had a link over at Flap’s Dentistry Blog this morning and this is a truely tragic event.

    Here is an update:

    An Irvington dentist who was disciplined by the state after a 6-year-old girl died during a routine procedure eight years ago is again under investigation following the death of a second child in his care last week.

    Patrick Bamgboye, 64, was still on probation for the earlier incident when 3-year-old Juan Quiej and his mother arrived at Dental Health Associates last Wednesday.

    Juan, who was there to have cavities fixed, was restrained in a cocoon-like papoose to limit his movement and administered a local anesthetic, his mother said.

    Shortly afterward, the boy went limp, his lips turning blue. He had stopped breathing. He was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.

    The death has sparked an investigation by the state Division of Consumer Affairs, the agency that oversees the Board of Dentistry, officials confirmed Tuesday.

    “We need to know what happened and why,” said Thomas Calcagni, the division’s director.

    In addition, Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray said in a statement her office was working with the Attorney General’s Office to determine if a criminal probe should be launched.

    Then, there was this from a release from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.

    We want to share with you the tragic news of the death of a three-year-old boy in New Jersey.  New Jersey officials are investigating dentist and AAPD & ADA member, Dr. Patrick Bamgboye, after the child died in his care while restrained and under local anesthetic for a routine cavity-filling procedure. Dr. Bamgboye was still on probation following a suspension by the Board of Dentistry for the death of a six-year-old girl in 2004.  

    Similar to the three-year old boy, the six-year old girl had been placed in a papoose and given a local anesthetic, and stopped breathing during the procedure. But a medical examiner determined that she had died of natural causes because she suffered from several serious medical conditions, including cerebral palsy.  The Board of Dentistry investigated her death and filed a complaint against Bamgboye in 2008.  An administrative law judge in 2010 found no gross negligence, but the board suspended Bamgboye for three months in January last year and placed him on probation for an additional 21 months. The Division of Consumer Affairs, which oversees the Board of Dentistry, is investigating. The Essex County prosecutor’s office is reviewing the case with the attorney general’s office to determine whether a criminal investigation is warranted.

    Stay tuned as the investigation proceeds.

  • Dentistry

    American Dentist Maj. Courtney Schapira Plays a Vital Role in Afghanistan

    Maj. Courtney Schapira poses with, from left, dental technician Nasir, dental clinic chief Dost Muhammad and dentist Janat at Forward Operating Base Lightning. Schapira is currently on a six-month deployment in Afghanistan as the Chief Dental Advisor at Paktia Regional Military Hospital in Gardez and is from the 628th Medical Group at Joint Base Charleston, S.C (Photo by Staff Sgt. Sarah Martinez)

    Here is a nice feature story about one of our military dentists in Afghanistan.

    In a remote valley of war torn Afghanistan, a Joint Base Charleston Airman is playing a vital role enhancing the country’s practice of dentistry.

    Major Courtney Schapira, from the 628th Medical Group at JB Charleston – Air Base, is currently assigned to the Medical Embedded Training Team at Forward Operating Base Lightning as the Chief Dental Advisor at Paktia Regional Military Hospital in Gardez, Afghanistan.

    “Our team is made up of 21 medical advisers from different NATO countries,” said Schapira. “We each have our own areas of expertise such as internal medicine, nursing, pharmacy, etc.”

    Schapira deployed in November 2011 and is the first and only dental adviser assigned there.

    “The Afghan dentists that I work with are excited to have a U.S. dental advisor and are eager to learn from me,” said Schapira. “They are asking questions and taking the initiative to do things on their own.”

    Paktia Regional Military is an Afghan National Army hospital that only treats ANA, Afghan police and civilians with combat-related injuries.

    The standard of dental care in Afghanistan is much different than in the United States. The clinic is not current with modern preventive dentistry.

    According to Schapira, the dentists are very skilled and adequate at their profession, however, their techniques, materials and thought processes behind their treatments are out-dated.

    “The dentists here used to rarely make patients numb prior to treatment,” said Schapira. “This is both painful for the patients and can turn what may be a single appointment in the U.S. into two or three appointments here, simply because the patients can only tolerate so much pain. Since my arrival, they now numb patients prior to any surgical procedure.”

    During her first few weeks in Afghanistan, Schapira felt overwhelmed by the challenges facing her. Her efforts were divided in multiple directions. Supplies, non-working equipment, outdated techniques, infection control and patient administration all needed her attention.

    “I realized I couldn’t improve everything at once,” said Schapira. “So, I set goals for myself and for the clinic. After most of the equipment was modernized, so I turned my focus to the supply inventory.”

    Read the entire story.

    Thank you Major for your service!

  • Dentistry,  Medicaid

    State of Texas Encouraging Teens to Get Pregnant for Orthodontic Braces?

    This is definitely government run amok in Medicaid and in the state of Texas.

    No one would say being a single mom is easy. Especially being a single, teenage mother.

    But the State of Texas appears to be encouraging teenage girls to become pregnant so they can receive free dental care under Medicaid.

    Watch the excellent investigative video above and explain to me why the State of Texas is even covering orthodontics with federal medicaid dollars when California has NO dental medicaid for adults – at all?

  • Dentistry,  Medicaid

    Crooked Teeth Video: The Investigative Story of the Texas Orthodontic Medicaid FLAP

    This is an excellent investigative series, albeit long video that discusses the problems with the State of Texas and their delivery of orthodontic care via Medicaid.

    The WFAA-TV news special “Crooked Teeth” highlights an 11-part investigative series that reveals tens of millions of dollars in questionable billings and a troubling lack of oversight of the Texas Medicaid orthodontic program.

    Although Texas Medicaid limits orthodontic care to poor children with severely misaligned teeth, “Crooked Teeth” reveals Texas paid more for Medicaid-funded dental orthodontics than the other 49 states combined.

    In fact, a number of Texas dental clinics receive more in Medicaid orthodontic reimbursements than the amounts paid annually to entire states like Illinois, Georgia, Florida and California.

    The half-hour news special “Crooked Teeth” raises questions about other Medicaid reimbursements nationally, including a troubling payment policy by one of the nation’s largest government contractors.

    Watch it all and wonder why government financed and run health care is just filled with danger – fraud and cronyism included.

  • Dentistry

    The Cease and Desist Letter From the Smile Center of San Antonio and Dr. Stephen Simpton

    Today, after receiving my neat new crown (thank you, Dr. Dovidio), I went over to my old mailbox at The UPS Store (where my wife has a mailbox) and received an old certified letter (from two weeks ago) from a Texas law firm. It was a cease and desist letter over a link I posted here some time ago.I won’t bore you with the details of the letter, nor scan it, but it essentially said stop publishing nasty stuff about our client Dr. Stephen Simpton. Unfortunately, sir, Mr. Jon Michael Smith, Attorney at Law in Austin Texas, a free press does not quite work this way – as I am sure you really know.Here is a video of Dr. Simpton being interviewed by a local San Antonio TV station:

    Fair enough and here is the latest video from WOAI-TV and the some of the problems at the Smile Center.

    Apparently, there are criminal and civil investigations of the Smile Center.

    A criminal investigation is underway into a chain of dental clinics here in San Antonio that targets children on Medicaid. This comes after an investigation by News 4 WOAI Trouble Shooter Brian Collister uncovered complaints of poor treatment at The Smile Center.

    The Texas Attorney General now confirms it has launched criminal and civil investigations into The Smile Center.

    The Attorney General’s office wants to know if the clinics defrauded medicaid by billing for dental work that did not need to be done. The Trouble Shooters have been reporting since February about complaints from parents who say the clinics did unnecessary and shoddy work on their children.

    These parents were unhappy with dental work done on their children and paid with millions of your tax dollars through Medicaid.

    A representative from the Attorney General’s office confirms it’s Medicaid fraud control unit has 180 bankers boxes of records taken from The Smile Center locations here in San Antonio. The agency’s civil Medicaid department has also filed a complaint in civil court against the business. But we don’t know what’s in that complaint because it’s sealed.

    A local law firm is also just weeks away from filing a massive lawsuit against The Smile Center on behalf of the parents of one hundred former patients.The Smile Center’s owner, Doctor Stephen Simpton, recently filed a lawsuit against WOAI and reporter Brian Collister. Simpton claims our stories defamed and disparaged him and his business. Simpton did not respond to a request for comment for this report.

    The attorney for Dr. Simpton responded:

    The attorney for The Smile Center said in a statement. “The investigation to which you refer is a routine Medicaid audit. It has no criminal implications and is not the result of any prior allegations against Dr. Simpton or The Smile Center.  In regard to the lawsuit to which you refer, Dr. Simpton has no comment other than the litigation will take care of itself.”

    Now, a number of patients have filed lawsuits.

    A chain of dental clinics here in San Antonio is hit with a massive lawsuit filed by parents who took their children to The Smile Center.

    The court action is more fallout from my investigation into the clinics and allegations it did unnecessary work at taxpayers expense.

    The lawsuit filed Wednesday on behalf of 23 children alleges the Smile center would routinely recommend unnecessary and excessive dental services.

    The lawyer filing the suit says this is the first of many to come as they prepare to file on behalf of one-hundred children.

    “The lawsuit alleges and we intend to prove with substantial evidence that a lot of the dental care received by these children was unnecessary and improper”, says Attorney Tom Crosley.

    The lawsuit was filed against The Smile Center, owner Dr. Stephen Simpton and former Smile Center dentist Dr Mark Hong.

    It alleges Smile Center and its dentists would – “recommend unnecessary and excessive dental services, most commonly consisting of pulpotomies (baby root canals) and stainless steel crowns”.

    The lawsuit goes on to allege “The smile center subjected these children to its production machine for one primary reason — to bilk Medicaid for its financial gain”.

    The suit also alleges the clinics made $55 Million from Medicaid from 2008 to 2010.

    OK, now the reporting has been done on Dr. Simpton and the problems he is facing. If Dr. Simpton or his attorney wish to comment on these allegations, they are welcome to do so in the comments below or they can use the contact information above (please note, I have a new mailing address).

  • Dentistry,  Dr. Tommy Murph,  The Daily Extraction

    The Daily Extraction: Dr. Tommy Murph’s Costa Rica Extraction Courses


    Video of the Oct. 23-28, 2011 Hands On Extraction Clinic in Flamingo Beach, Costa Rica

    Dr. Tommy Murph of Daily Extraction fame is giving another tooth extraction course in Costa Rica.

    Here are the details:

    • Saturday March 17 thru Wednesday March 21 in Tamarindo, Costa Rica
    • Saturday June 30 thru Wednesday July 4 (Location not set yet…To be determined by December 5th)

    If you really want to learn how to perform simple extractions, surgical extractions and surgical extractions of third molars, give these courses a look.

    The details:


    • Class:  Hands On Extractions
    • Credits: Forty (40) Hours AGD PACE Approved
    • Dates: Saturday March 17 thru Wednesday March 21
    • Cost: $4000 
    • Lecture will be Given Saturday Night 6:00pm-9:30pm 
    • and all day Sunday 8am-9:30pm
    • and Monday night 7pm-until finished
    • Clinical Hands On will be all day Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
    • Location: Tamarindo, Costa Rica


    More information can be obtained from Dr. Murph: drtommymurph at yahoo dot com or by phone: 843-488-4357

    Dr. Murph’s website is here and his extraction manuals are here on e-Bay.


    The Daily Extraction Archive

  • Animals,  Dentistry,  Heartland Dental Care

    Heartland Dental Care Signs Consent Order Granting Permanent Injunction With North Carolina Dental Board

    Heartland Dental Care has signed a consent order with the North Carolina Dental Board.

    The Flap is about the illegal transfer of ownership of a dental practice, owned by a North Carolina dentist, Gary Cameron to Heartland Dental Care in violation of North Carolina law.

    Here is the consent order.

    Heartland Consent Order Granting Injunction 9-6-11

    And, the two dentists (Dr. Gary Cameron and Dr.Peter Son) involved in the buy-sell transactions were disciplined by the North Carolina Dental Board.

    Here is Dr. Gary Cameron’s Consent Order in lieu of an Administrative Hearing.

    At issue is North Carolina law called the Management Arrangement Rule (MAR) which was enacted by the North Carolina Legislature to protect the health and welfare with respect to the practice of dentistry.

    They enacted the MAR to effectuate the Legislature’s mandate in the Dental Practice Act that the ownership of dental practices by unlicensed corporations and entities is prohibited because of the concern that when corporations which are unlicensed to practice dentistry gain improper control over dental practices, patient care may become secondary to profits thereby creating an endangerment to the public.

    Here is Dr. Cameron’s Consent Order.

    Cameron Gary – CO Aug 11

    Dr. Peter Son, Dr. Cameron’s Associate accepted an official reprimand from the North Carolina Dental Doard for his involvement with Heartland Dental Care.

    Here is the reprimand.

    Son Peter – Ltr of Reprimand Aug 11

    So, what does this all mean?

    Heartland Dental Care, a dental management corporation, attempted to purchase Dr. Gary Cameron’s dental practice in violation of North Carolina law. They tried a series of agreements and contracts to skirt the law which prohibited them from a controlling interest in owning a dental practice.

    Heartland Dental Care was caught, signed a punitive consent order with a permanent injunction and paid a fine.

    Both dentists were disciplined.

    In North Carolina, a licensed dentist MUST own and control a dental practice, not an unlicensed, business entity.

    And, dentists are on notice, that should they be tempted to engage in business practices of selling their offices/practices unlawfully, they will have their dental licenses at stake and will be disciplined.

  • Bisphosphonates,  Dentistry,  Fosamax,  Oral Bisphosphonates

    FDA Panel Says Bisphosphonates Need Label Changes on Use Duration

    This is the recommendation that came down today although the Food and Drug Administration does not have to accept the recommendations of its panels.

    Bone drugs from Warner Chilcott Plc, Roche Holding AG, Merck & Co. and Novartis AG need labeling changes to reduce the risk of fractures, a U.S. panel said.

    The companies should add clarifications on the length of time that osteoporosis patients may take the medicines, outside advisers to the Food and Drug Administration said today in a 17- 6 vote in Adelphi, Maryland. The FDA isn’t required to follow its panels’ recommendations.

    The agency has evaluated the safety of the drugs, known as bisphosphonates, for almost four years and cited possible links to unusual thigh fractures and jawbone deterioration in 2010. The agency said in July it also was examining conflicting studies on whether bisphosphonate pills such as Warner Chilcott’s Actonel, Merck’s Fosamax and Roche’s Boniva raise esophageal cancer risks.

    A revised label should “be very clear that efficacy may fall off after a period of time, perhaps five years,” panelist Lewis Nelson, director of the medical toxicology fellowship program at New York University, said after the vote. “Serious concerns have been raised about risk, and those need to be continually evaluated as well.”

    There needs to be additional research, period.

    Mere warning labels are not going to answer the questions from every day patients – how long do I take the medicine and what protocol do I use? Or, what is the chance my femur will fracture or will I develop osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) if I have a tooth removed.

  • Dentistry,  Fosamax,  Oral Bisphosphonates,  Osteonecrosis

    Fosamax Osteonecrosis of the Jaw Lawsuit Set for Trial September 7

    Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (ONJ)

    Another oral bisphosphonate (Fosamax with ONJ) lawsuit trial set.

    The next trial date for a Fosamax lawsuit involving jaw necrosis is scheduled to begin early next month.

    The Fosamax trial will involve a complaint brought by Linda Secrest, of Florida, who alleges that Merck failed to adequately warn that side effects of Fosamax, the popular osteoporosis drug, can lead to severe jaw bone decay. Trial is scheduled to begin on September 7, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

    Fosamax is an osteoporosis drug that belongs to a family of similar medications known as bisphosphonates. Long-term use of oral bisphosphonates has been linked to an increased risk of serious and debilitating jaw problems, known as osteonecrosis of the jaw. The condition causes the jaw bone to decay and rot, often resulting in the need for surgery to remove portions of the jaw.

    Merck currently faces more than 1,100 Fosamax jaw lawsuits, most of which have been consolidated and centralized for pretrial proceedings in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York as part of an MDL or multidistrict litigation.

    There have already been several trials for Fosamax jaw necrosis lawsuits that have been held in the federal MDL over the last two years. While Merck has successfully defended its medication in three cases, one lawsuit resulted in an $8 million jury award for Fosamax jaw damage last year, finding that Merck failed to adequately research the potential side effects of warn about the risk of jaw necrosis from Fosamax.

    A few more cases and Merck will probably propose some industry-wide settlement agreement.

    Next up will be the lawsuits over bone fractures from Fosamax.

  • Dentistry

    Video: Will A Cavity-Filling Fluid Replace the Dental Drill?

    Well, perhaps, some day.

    Perhaps someday, the bi-annual trip to the dentist may become much less intimidating, thanks to researchers at Leeds University in the UK who have developed a completely pain-free way to fill cavities.

    Taking inspiration from the principles of regenerative medicine, the process involves a special peptide-based fluid. Suspended in water, the peptide fluid, known as P 11-4 is clear and has a similar viscosity as water. Under certain conditions, namely when placed in contact with saliva that surrounds a tooth, the fluid forms a gel scaffold that fills the microscopic holes that are cavities. The scaffold, which mimics proteins that are found in growing teeth, attracts hydroxyapatite and other minerals to regenerate actual tooth enamel within weeks.

    You can read more here.

    Dentistry has been awaiting a “Magic Mouthwash” to treat caries and periodontal disease for decades.

    Has the future arrived?