Medical Misdiagnosis Lawyers

Failure to diagnose and misdiagnosis of an illness or injury is the basis of many medical malpractice lawsuits. Misdiagnosis on its own is not necessarily medical malpractice, and not all diagnostic errors give rise to a successful lawsuit. Instead, the misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose must result in negligent medical care, delayed treatment, or no treatment, which in turn must result in a worsening of the patient’s medical condition in order for the malpractice to be actionable. [1]

Cancer Misdiagnosis

Medical technology has made the timely and accurate diagnosis of many forms of cancer possible. Since there is no known cure, early detection is crucial for nearly all types of cancer cases. Often, speedy diagnosis and treatment can help delay the symptoms or even cause cancer to go into remission. These treatments can add years or even decades to a person’s life. When medical negligence results in the failure to diagnose and treat cancer, patients are left to suffer when the disease may have been treatable.

If you or a loved one has suffered due to medical negligence or cancer misdiagnosis, the lawyers at Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., are here to stand up for your rights. In handling your case, a medical malpractice attorney from our law firm will consider why and how the cancer was not properly diagnosed, and what damages you have suffered because of the misdiagnosis. We work with medical experts who help determine the extent of the injuries caused by a missed or delayed diagnosis. Nothing can undo the harm caused by a misdiagnosis, but we can help you hold negligent hospitals or doctors accountable for their errors.

Most Common Causes of Cancer Misdiagnosis?

Most available cancer treatments are only effective in combating the early stages of cancer. If a doctor fails to notice or consider the initial symptoms, cancer may progress beyond treatment. Some cancers develop quickly, meaning that a patient could only have a window of a few months before the condition is untreatable. When doctors fail to promptly diagnose cancer, patients can suffer needlessly. All too often, cancer misdiagnosis results in wrongful death.

The major causes of a missed or delayed cancer diagnosis can include:

  • An improper sampling of blood and tissue
  • Incorrect reading of laboratory tests, and x-ray studies
  • Failure to order proper testing
  • Failure to diagnose and respond to symptoms of cancer
  • Mistaking cancer for another benign condition
  • Failure to recommend proper cancer screening tests in accordance with medical protocol
  • Failure to properly conduct or negligently perform screening tests

Patients who are not properly diagnosed early may require more invasive and expensive treatments and have a lower chance of survival.

Most Commonly Misdiagnosed Cancers?

Medical negligence can potentially result in the misdiagnosis of any kind of cancer. However, according to some studies, there are certain types of cancer that are misdiagnosed most frequently. These include:

  • Lymphoma
  • Breast cancer
  • Sarcomas
  • Melanoma
  • Colon cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Lung cancer

 

Delayed Diagnoses of an Illness

We all rely on the expertise of doctors, radiologists, and other medical professionals to properly diagnose health conditions and illnesses and to then provide appropriate treatment. While a diagnosis of a disease can be as much an art as a science, we expect doctors to follow standards of care and to order appropriate medical tests based on our symptoms. However, when doctors neglect established diagnostic protocol or ignore certain symptoms, a patient’s condition may worsen. For certain diseases, like cancer, a misdiagnosis often delays crucial, life-saving treatment until it is too late.

If you have suffered a serious injury or a loved one has died due to delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of disease, the medical malpractice attorneys at Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., offer a free initial consultation to discuss your options. We have the resources necessary to fully investigate your case. We also work with medical experts who can help determine the extent of the harm caused by medical negligence. In one case, our client suffered permanent spinal cord injury as a result of an undiagnosed spinal abscess. Our attorneys obtained a $14 million settlement for our client, which helped guarantee a good quality of life after the injury.

What is the Difference Between a Delayed Diagnosis and a Misdiagnosis?

delayed diagnosis most commonly occurs when a doctor fails to recognize the symptoms of an illness or health condition. Often, a patient is sent home without treatment, which allows the disease to progress. Alternatively, a misdiagnosis happens when a doctor mistakes the symptoms of one condition for another, often less serious, illness. This results in the delayed diagnosis of the actual condition, as well as unnecessary treatment of a nonexistent illness. This treatment may cause additional harm or lead to the worsening of the true disease.

The delayed diagnosis of any illness can cause worse symptoms and prolonged recovery times. However, some illnesses can cause much more damage than others if left undiagnosed. Common examples of illnesses that can cause permanent, catastrophic injuries or wrongful death due to delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis include:

  • Infections
  • Heart attack
  • Cancer
  • Meningitis
  • Spinal Cord Abscess
  • Stroke
  • Distress or complications during pregnancy or labor and delivery

The failure to diagnose any of these conditions can result in much more serious and life-threatening complications. For example, a cancer misdiagnosis can allow the disease to spread until treatment, which could add years or decades to a cancer patient’s life, is no longer effective, resulting in wrongful death. On the other hand, failure to diagnose distress during pregnancy or labor and delivery can cause birth injuries to the child as well as the mother. This often results in permanent disabilities for the child, such as cerebral palsy from a brain injury.

Is Misdiagnosis Always Medical Malpractice?

A misdiagnosis alone does not meet the requirements for a medical malpractice case. In order for a delayed or incorrect diagnosis to be considered malpractice, you and your attorney must be able to prove that your doctor was negligent. This means that your doctor did not provide the same care that another, qualified doctor would have. If you can prove medical negligence, you must then show that the diagnostic error caused actual harm and material damages.

Due to these requirements, medical malpractice cases involve medical experts, who understand and can explain standards of care. These experts help determine what went wrong, and what would have happened if the doctor had made the correct diagnosis in a timely manner. If your misdiagnosis was in fact medical malpractice, you could recover the cost of your additional medical bills and other damages. If the misdiagnosis caused a permanent, preventable disability, our lawyers can help you seek compensation for pain and suffering as well as future costs and lost wages.

Misdiagnosed and Injured? Call Our Philadelphia Medical Misdiagnosis Attorneys Today.

In many cases, simple tests can result in the diagnosis of a serious illness early enough to treat it successfully. However, if a doctor overlooks recognizable symptoms and fails to order an appropriate test, the illness may worsen. If you sustained injuries or lost a loved one as a result of a misdiagnosis, our medical malpractice attorneys can help. We will investigate the damage caused by the failure to diagnose your condition. However, we will also consider how the results of your misdiagnosis will affect your future and your family.

Contact us today to speak with one of our knowledgeable lawyers representing victims of delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of an illness. We offer free initial consultations and handle cases on a contingency fee basis. You pay us nothing unless we get results for you.