Infection Control Lapse in Hawaii at VA Dental Clinic

The U.S. department of Veteran Affairs (VA) has said that 20 patients treated on May 23 and May 27 in Hawaii may have been exposed to viruses due to instruments that were not sterilized. The dental instruments used were believed to be clean, but the VA monitors said they were not sterilized. Only a single load of dental equipment, which was typically sent from one medical center with a dental clinic to a different medical center for sterilization was not performed. It is believed that the risk of contracting anything like HIV or hepatitis is low but patients at risk are recommend to be tested for viruses. The source of the story is over at khon2 titled Veterans Affairs apologizes to dental patients for unsterilized instruments written by Nestor Garcia on June 27, 2014, and located over at  http://khon2.com/2014/06/27/veterans-affairs-apologizes-to-dental-patients-for-unsterilized-instruments/. Staff … Read more

Dental Patients Warned of Possible HIV and Hepatitis Exposure in Pennsylvania

Recently, patients of a long time dentist in Pennsylvania have been warned of possible exposure to HIV and hepatitis B and C. The dental license of the 74 year old dentist has been suspended as state officials investigate. It is suspected that he was not properly sterilizing his instruments. No reports of disease or transmission have occurred. The dentist is a long time dentist of a school district. In an interview with one of the school’s students who was examined by the dentist and her mother, it was stated the dentist didn’t have gloves on when treating patients and didn’t wash his hands between patients. The full interview can be seen over at http://www.nbcnews.com/watch/nbc-news-channel/dirty-dentist-has-town-clenching-its-teeth-282301507827 provided by NBC News. In the past, other cases have occurred where dentists or oral surgeons have been suspected of not following proper procedures to avoid spreading disease. For … Read more

Oklahoma Dentist Disciplinary Database

A lot of media publicity has occurred regarding a case that appeared last month where patients of an oral surgeon in Oklahoma were asked to get tested for HIV and hepatitis after it was found that potentially lax sterilization procedures were used. More on this case is discussed over at Dental Patients Warned of Possible HIV and Hepatitis Exposure Due to Oral Surgeon’s Practices for example. The Tulsa World has been prompted to publish a searchable database of all disciplinary actions taken against dentists, in the state of Oklahoma from January 2000, to January 2013, after the case involving lax sterilization procedures came to light. In that case one patient had four third molars (wisdom teeth) removed and was allegedly given sedation by a dental assistant who should not have been giving sedation. She later developed an infection and liver … Read more

Dental Bibs May Harbor Oral and Skin Bacteria Even After Disinfection

Researchers at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine and the Forsyth Institute published a study on April 2, 2013, which showed that a significant proportion of dental bib clips harbored bacteria from the patient, dental clinician, and the environment after the clips had undergone standard disinfection procedures. A dental bib clip of course is that metallic chain that wraps around your neck and holds the dental bib that the dentist gives you when you see them. The researchers found that the majority of thousands of bacteria found on bib clips were removed after the standard disinfection procedure. Even so, the researchers found that 40% of the bib clips after disinfection retained one or more aerobic bacteria which is able to grow and live in oxygenated environments. Furthermore, the researchers found that 70% of bib clips tested after disinfection retained one … Read more

Dental Patients Warned of Possible HIV and Hepatitis Exposure Due to Oral Surgeon’s Practices

Previously in this post Oral Surgeon Investigated for Reusing Needles and Syringes it was discussed how last summer in 2012 an oral surgeon in Colorado was investigated for re-using syringes and needles while performing various oral and facial surgery procedures. Around 8,000 patients were told to be tested for potential HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C. Recently, in Oklahoma around 7,000 patients were told to be tested for potential HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C who were treated by an oral surgeon due to his potentially rusty instruments and lax sterilization procedures. A complaint by the Oklahoma  Board of  Dentistry was filed against the oral surgeon on March 26, 2013. It is located over at http://ftpcontent.worldnow.com/ktul/documents/Harrington_Complaint_OBD.pdf. The complaint says that an unidentified patient who was treated by the oral surgeon tested positive for HIV and hepatitis C shortly after being … Read more