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The preschooler vs. the dentist, Part 2

When we left our young heroine with the 3 cavities, her family had learned about silver diamine fluoride (SDF) thanks indirectly to Quizzify. Recall that the dentist had proposed a $2500 procedure to fill these cavities, including general anesthesia. (The full story, to date, is right here, courtesy of Missouri uberbroker and devoted Quizzifan Adam Berkowitz.)

By contrast, SDF would cost about $25/tooth.



When confronted with the SDF alternative and asked why they didn't recommend it in the first place, the response was:

”Yes, our office does perform SDF therapy but we generally don’t discuss this alternative with our patients because insurance doesn’t cover it."

Some insurance does cover it, but even without insurance, a $75 uncovered fee is a lower figure than $2500 "covered," since dental "coverage" invariably involves co-insurance and a maximum payout.

The practice manager then offered an "emergency visit" to discuss this "alternative treatment plan," thus racking up another co-pay. And to call SDF an "alternative" to general anesthesia is a like calling seat belts an "alternative" to accidents. Zero significant complications have ever been reported in the literature. (SDF does stain the decay black, but these are baby teeth that are going to fall out anyway.)

Stay tuned for Part 3. (Honestly we really don't know how this is going to turn out. The dentist is not going down without a fight, we suspect. That "emergency visit" repartee was brilliant. Means he can charge more than for a regular visit. He could actually treat the cavities with SDF in the time it takes to have an "emergency visit" to discuss this.)