CHARLESTON - A Boone County man is suing three dentists he claims provided him with substandard treatment.
John Harless was a patient of Drs. Antione Skaff, Douglas W. O'Dell and John Brock at various times in 2011 and presented to the defendants' offices for dental care, according to three complaints filed April 22 in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Harless claims Skaff was aware that he had limited opening of his mouth, loss of taste on the left side of his tongue and a palpable node below the left side of his lower jaw, which was believed to be a lymph node below his left mandible.
On Oct. 20, 2011, Skaff performed an extraction ignoring other obvious signs of significant health problems and did not refer Harless to a specialist, according to the suits.
Harless claims Skaff performed incorrect and inappropriate diagnostic tests and failed to obtain correct and appropriate diagnostic tests, which caused him damages.
O'Dell misdiagnosed Harless with a temporomandibular joint disorder and performed substandard treatment and failed to obtain and record pre-treatment diagnostic work up, according to the suits.
Harless claims Brock failed to exercise the degree of care, skill and learning required or expected of a reasonable prudent dentist and/or healthcare provider or facility by deviating from the standards of care and/or carelessly and negligently failing to properly diagnose, monitor, manage and treat his dental condition.
During the time he was under the defendants' care, Harless had an undiagnosed giant left anterior triangle mass, which was later identified as a poorly differentiated squamous cell carcinoma of the oropharynx, according to the suits.
Harless claims the defendants failed to properly monitor and treat him, which caused him suffered advancement of the oropharynx, head, neck and nasal cancer, which resulted in lasting and permanent injury.
As a result of the defendants' wrongful acts, Harless endured pain and suffering; mental anguish and emotional distress; annoyance and inconvenience; and loss of the ability to enjoy life, according to the suits.
Harless was a patient at each of the defendants' offices for dental care. He claims the defendants ignored other obvious signs of significant health problems and performed sub-standard treatment.
Harless is seeking compensatory and general damages. He is being represented by J. Michael Ranson and Cynthia M. Ranson of Ranson Law Officers and G. Patrick Jacobs of Jacobs Law Offices.
The cases have been assigned to Circuit Judges James C. Stucky and Jennifer Bailey.
Kanawha Circuit Court case numbers: 13-C-771, 13-C-772, 13-C-773