In the United States, medical misdiagnoses are more common than you may think.
One study shows that roughly 12 million people are misdiagnosed each year.
Further, out of those 12 million people, 10-20% of them had serious medical conditions that were missed.
These numbers are concerning, as a misdiagnosis can present a life-or-death situation.
If you believe your medical professional misdiagnosed your medical condition, it is possible that you have a claim for medical malpractice.
At Dempsey, Kingsland & Osteen, we understand that suffering a misdiagnosis can be scary, and we are here to help you.
Below, we discuss misdiagnoses and the possibility of pursuing a claim for medical malpractice.
What Are Misdiagnoses?
A misdiagnosis occurs when a medical professional mistakenly attribute your symptoms to a medical condition that you do not have.
This can happen when the proper diagnostic tests are not run, when diagnostic tests are improperly read, or when a medical professional ignores certain symptoms altogether.
When a medical professional misdiagnoses your condition, it can result in:
- Delays in a correct diagnosis,
- Administration of improper medications,
- Unnecessary surgeries,
- Worsening of your medical condition, or
These examples are just a few of the potential harms resulting from a misdiagnosis.
There are some medical conditions that are misdiagnosed more often than others.
According to one study, the most commonly misdiagnosed conditions include:
- Colorectal cancer,
- Lung cancer,
- Breast cancer,
- Heart attacks,
- Prostate cancer,
- Bladder cancer,
- Pulmonary embolisms, and
- Brain hemorrhages.
If your medical professional misdiagnosed your medical condition, you may have a viable lawsuit for misdiagnosis.
Preventing a Misdiagnosis
It might be comforting to know that medical professionals usually get it right.
In fact, they correctly diagnose their patients about 95% of the time. However, there is still that 5% chance that your doctor may have gotten it wrong.
To prevent a misdiagnosis, we recommend that you:
- Get a second opinion from another appropriate medical professional,
- Ask your medical professional to review your medical tests and records,
- Question your medical professional about why your symptoms might not be improving, and
- Find medical professionals who are highly reviewed.
While you can take these preventative measures, we know that in some instances, you may not be able to avoid a misdiagnosis.
So, Can You Sue Your Doctor for a Misdiagnosis?
A patient’s right to the proper standard of medical care is protected by law.
So, if you did not receive that standard of care, it is likely that you have the right to pursue a legal claim.
In most medical malpractice cases, you will also have to show that you suffered a harm or injury due to the diagnosis.
An experienced medical malpractice attorney can help you meet these evidentiary burdens and build a strong case.
So, if you were wondering, can I sue for a misdiagnosis? The short answer is, yes.
How Can Dempsey, Kingsland & Osteen Help?
At Dempsey, Kingsland & Osteen, we can help you get the most compensation possible for an injury you suffered due to a medical professional’s misdiagnosis of your medical condition.
Our firm has decades of experience dealing with medical malpractice cases, and our medical malpractice attorneys will be fierce advocates on your behalf.
You can contact us today for a free consultation at 816-408-3844.