Making an accurate, timely diagnosis the first and most important step to effectively treating an illness, infection, or disease. Unfortunately, it is common for even experienced doctors to make an incorrect diagnosis, make a delayed diagnosis, or simply fail to diagnose the condition at any stage of its development. Whether the underlying issue is a mix-up at a medical laboratory, the failure to recognize the warning signs of a developing condition, or the misinterpretation of a medical scan or biopsy, diagnostic errors can lead to unnecessary expenses, physical and emotional suffering, and worst of all, a potential shortening of the patient’s life.
If you, your spouse, your son or daughter, or one of your family members was harmed by a delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis, you should discuss your family’s legal options with Prosper Shaked. You may have grounds to file a claim or lawsuit against the doctor who misdiagnosed you, the laboratory which lost or tainted your medical samples, or other parties whose actions contributed to your illness. For a free legal consultation concerning a diagnostic error at a hospital or doctor’s office in Miami, contact the medical malpractice attorneys at Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA.
Can I Sue My Doctor for Failing to Diagnose Cancer or Other Diseases?
In order to successfully obtain a verdict or settlement after sustaining an illness or injury due to a diagnostic error, you will need to use evidence to demonstrate that your doctor, dermatologist, gynecologist, or other parties acted with “negligence.” Negligence is a complex legal concept, but can most succinctly be summarized as carelessness resulting in harm.
Failure to diagnose, delayed diagnosis, or misdiagnosis may be grounds for a malpractice claim or malpractice lawsuit if certain facts, or “elements of negligence,” are present in your case. These facts or elements are that:
- A “duty of care” existed. A doctor has a duty of care to his or her patients, which means that the doctor is responsible for taking adequate measures to minimize the risk of preventable harm.
- Your doctor violated (“breached”) his or her duty of care. In other words, your doctor failed to meet the care standards that would have been met by another doctor possessing a comparable level of knowledge and experience. For example, a doctor might fail to examine a patient adequately, fail to refer a patient to a specialist when necessary, or fail to read a medical scan correctly.
- There was “causation,” which means that your illness was caused by your doctor’s actions or failures to act. When a person causes harm by failing to act, it is called an “omission.”
- You suffered actual harm (“damages”) due to your doctor’s acts or omissions – for example, developing cancer because your doctor failed to examine and treat a suspicious birthmark, growth, or lesion.
A skilled Miami diagnostic error attorney will understand what sort of evidence to obtain, and how to present such evidence, to effectively demonstrate that your doctor acted negligently in failing to return a proper diagnosis. Due to the great technical complexity of medical negligence cases, which demand detailed scrutiny of the doctor’s actions, facility’s policies, and patient’s medical history, it is imperative that you are represented by a knowledgeable attorney with experience handling misdiagnosis injury lawsuits in Florida.
Commonly Misdiagnosed Medical Conditions
There are many reasons a diagnostic error can occur. For example, a medical test could produce a false positive or false negative reading, which then goes undetected by the treating physician. In other cases, the laboratory returns accurate test results, which are then misinterpreted by the doctor. In other cases still, a doctor simply fails to investigate an unusual development on or inside of the patient’s body.
Whatever the cause of a delayed or incorrect diagnosis may be, the outcomes for the patient can be devastating, particularly if the misdiagnosed condition is life-threatening. The patient may suffer nerve or organ damage, lose the use of a sense or body part, become permanently paralyzed, or need to undergo costly, risky, invasive surgery.
While virtually any medical condition can be improperly diagnosed, some conditions are more likely to be misdiagnosed or undiagnosed than others. Some common examples of illnesses and medical emergencies that are frequently diagnosed incorrectly include:
- Bladder Cancer
- Breast Cancer
- Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction)
- Liver Cancer
- Lung Cancer
- Lyme Disease
- Ovarian Cancer
- Pancreatic Cancer
- Prostate Cancer
- Pulmonary Embolism
- Thyroid Cancer
- Uterine Cancer
Miami Misdiagnosis and Failure to Diagnose Attorney for Malpractice Victims
It is absolutely devastating to learn that your life, or that of a loved one, has been altered or shortened by the careless actions of a doctor you trusted to safeguard your health. You have a right to seek justice, and to hold the negligent doctor or facility accountable for the suffering you have endured due to the diagnostic error. You could be entitled to financial compensation for your pain and suffering, mental anguish, diminished earning capacity, medical bills, lost income, and other damages.
Proudly serving the Miami metropolitan area, Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA can help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve if your doctor acted with negligence. For a free legal consultation concerning a delayed diagnosis, misdiagnosis, or failure to diagnosis, contact us immediately at (305) 694-2676.