What is a Misdiagnosis or Failure to Diagnose?
A misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose occurs when a physician does not provide the necessary standard of care. As a result, your medical condition is not identified correctly in a reasonable time due to hospital negligence.
Doctors don’t always know what’s wrong immediately. Specific symptoms can indicate more than one illness. To identify the injury or disease, physicians should adhere to the accepted standard and, in many cases, the hospital or facility’s established protocols.
The standard of care depends on the symptoms and area of medicine, but it includes:
- Taking a complete medical history from the patient, if possible;
- Performing a physical exam;
- Noting any symptoms and signs of injury or disease; and
- Performing appropriate diagnostic tests, such as blood tests and imaging.
How Common Is Misdiagnosis?
Misdiagnoses and delayed diagnoses are more common than you might think. Based on research by the Veteran Affairs Center for Innovations in Quality, Effectiveness, and Safety, around 12 million U.S. patients are misdiagnosed each year.
The impact of a misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis can be severe. For example, a cancer misdiagnosis allows the disease to spread. It may require more aggressive treatment months later or increase the likelihood of wrongful death.
Symptoms may also be mistaken for another illness, forcing a patient to undergo unnecessary care. This can then lead to new injuries. To make matters worse, inappropriate care also drives up medical costs.
Are You a Victim of Misdiagnosis?
Determining whether you or a loved one were the victim of a misdiagnosis usually requires a second opinion from a respected physician. Many people who come to us sought answers elsewhere after their condition didn’t improve. Finally receiving the proper diagnosis can indicate a previous doctor’s failure.
However, learning whether the physician’s actions were within the standard of care is challenging. It’s best to talk with a misdiagnosis lawyer in Lancaster, PA. Doctors can make an incorrect diagnosis despite taking the appropriate steps. To have a malpractice claim, we must show the doctor did not follow the standard of care, and their negligence caused you harm.
How We Approach Failure to Diagnose, Delayed Diagnosis & Misdiagnosis Claims
Many patients contact our Lancaster, PA misdiagnosis attorneys after they suspect a mistake. Unfortunately, too many individuals learn weeks, months, or years later that their initial diagnosis was wrong. They may realize they’ve gone through unnecessary care and paid medical bills while not getting any real help. Some even realize a doctor ignored signs of a severe illness, such as a stroke or cervical cancer.
We will thoroughly investigate what happened to you or your loved one and identify if a failure to diagnose properly caused your injury. We have retained well-respected medical experts in various fields to build our clients’ medical malpractice cases. We have and will continue to fight for justice for patients harmed by delayed and inaccurate diagnoses.
Contact a Misdiagnosis Attorney for Help
If you or a loved one have suffered because of a misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, or delayed diagnosis, you should speak with our experienced misdiagnosis lawyers near you. We have been working with misdiagnosis victims for years. We will connect you with medical experts and help you build a case against a negligent physician.