AAPD President Dr. Joel Berg and national spokesperson Dr. Indru Punwani were both included in today’s Dr.Bicupsid.com story regarding last night’s ABC News story that examined the potential risks of pediatric dental sedation. The ABC News story appeared on both Nightline and World News with Diane Sawyer. The report alleged that, in some cases, undertrained dentists motivated primarily by profits are unnecessarily sedating young patients for routine procedures.
Even well-trained dentists have been "unable" or "ill-equipped" to deal with such scenarios involving pediatric patients, according to the report, which characterized the matter as a growing problem.
According to Dr. Berg, "To perform sedation does require significant training, either in a pediatric residency program or through a lengthy series of courses where there is mentoring and calibration. It is hard to imagine that in a matter of a few days without any previous training or experience that it would provide enough training." The ABC story also neglected to point out that sedation is a necessary part of treatment for some children, Dr. Berg added.
"Often, children of a very young age have many cavities and are 'precooperative,' so the only way you can treat them is with sedation or general anesthesia," he said. "In these cases, these are medically necessary procedures that have to be done safely and effectively, with proper training."
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