When people think of medical malpractice, they generally think of surgeries gone wrong, a doctor giving the wrong medication or other situations that put people at genuine risk to their life and limb. These are all real reasons why people file medical malpractice claims, but nearly half of all medical malpractice claims filed in the US involve medical malpractice by wrong diagnoses. Instances of medical malpractice by wrong diagnoses can be just as deadly as giving someone the wrong surgery, the wrong medication or incompetent care.
A wrong diagnosis can be given under many different circumstances. A Wyoming man, for instance, filed one of these claims after being discharged from an emergency room while suffering an undiagnosed broken neck. Other people have not been diagnosed as having cancer until the cancer had progressed to stage III or stage IV, when treatment options are limited and when the prognosis is not generally very good.
Medical malpractice comes in many forms. Sometimes doctors simply miss the diagnosis that they should have gotten. In other cases, the healthcare facility may push the staff and the physicians so hard and have been seeing so many patients that they create an atmosphere where it’s nearly impossible for physicians to do their jobs. Whatever the reason, the attorneys that handle these claims are well-equipped to investigate the situation and to figure out what kind of negligence was involved.
If you’re considering filing a medical malpractice claim over a wrong diagnosis, it’s important to remember that there are entirely legitimate circumstances when this can happen. For instance, if you never presented with symptoms of an illness and a physician failed to notice something very wrong with your body, it could reasonably be argued that the physician was not negligent at all and that they simply had no reason to make the diagnosis that you were eventually given. In cases where the physician should have known, however, and where you were not given adequate attention and proper medical care, filing a lawsuit may be advisable.
Talking to an attorney is the first step in filing one of these lawsuits. Don’t be intimidated if you’re not sure whether or not it is justified. Attorneys who handle malpractice claims have their own experts and they have access to input and advice from them that can help them to determine whether or not it would be worth your while to go ahead and file one of these lawsuits.