Cancer Misdiagnosis Attorneys in Kansas City

The negligent failure to diagnose cancer is a medical error that usually has grave consequences for the patient. Negligently misdiagnosing cancer is equally dangerous because it also delays the treatment of the real disease.

At Dempsey Kingsland Osteen, our Kansas City medical malpractice lawyers have helped numerous people whose illness has been made worse by the misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose cancer. With cancer treatment, time is of the essence. Negligent misdiagnosis or delays in treatment of cancer can turn treatable cancer into a cancer that has spread, not only leading to more treatment, but sometimes to incurable cancer or death.

Contact us today to schedule a free initial consultation about your case. Call us at (816) 484-3776.

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Types of Cancer Misdiagnosis

There are generally two ways in which a cancer misdiagnosis can occur. The first scenario is a wrongful diagnosis of cancer. This happens when a doctor, radiologist, pathologist, or any provider involved in the patient’s care mistakenly diagnoses a healthy individual with cancer.  

The second—more common scenario—occurs if the physician or medical provider fails to catch indicators of cancer and ultimately fails to diagnose the patient. In other words, they mistakenly tell someone with cancer that they do not have cancer. 

In the second scenario, the consequences can be tragic and fatal to the patient if their cancer goes undiagnosed until it is too late to treat or prevent the spread. It can also subject the individual to unnecessary and avoidable pain and suffering that could have been controlled with proper medication and treatment. 

Causes of Cancer Diagnosis Errors

Some of the most common cancer diagnosis mistakes include:

  • Failure to identify an obvious lump during a breast examination
  • Not ordering x-rays, CT scans, or MRIs
  • Failure to properly read or evaluate test results, such as Pap smears, mammograms, or MRIs
  • Not recognizing common symptoms of a type of cancer
  • Mistaking a tumor for an infection or diagnosing the tumor as benign
  • Failing to follow up on test results
  • Neglecting to order a biopsy or other tests
  • Not following up with the patient or ordering future tests

At Dempsey Kingsland Osteen, our attorneys have handled a wide range of cancer diagnosis cases. Recent cases include those involving colon cancer, breast cancer, and Hodgkin’s disease. Visit our results page to learn about our cancer misdiagnosis cases.

Common Types of Misdiagnosed Cancer

Cancers such as breast cancer, colon cancer, cervical cancer, and prostate cancer are among the most frequently misdiagnosed or diagnosed at a late stage. Our law firm has handled these types of cancer misdiagnosis cases and more, obtaining financial awards for clients and their families that allowed them to start recovering with less financial worry.

Proving a Cancer Misdiagnosis  

In any cancer medical malpractice lawsuit, including a misdiagnosis, you have the burden to prove your case as the plaintiff. 

If a physician, radiologist, pathologist, or other healthcare provider misdiagnoses a patient and another provider with the same or similar skill and experience would have likely made an accurate diagnosis, it may be medical malpractice.

A plaintiff must prove:

  • A doctor-patient relationship existed, giving rise to a duty to provide reasonable care;
  • The doctor or provider negligently failed to diagnose cancer, breaching that duty;
  • The doctor or provider’s error caused injury and harm, and
  • The harm caused by the misdiagnosis caused compensable damages. 

For instance, if the misdiagnosis caused your cancer to spread or become incurable, you may have a valid claim for medical malpractice. 

Cancer Misdiagnosis Statute of Limitations

Every state has a statute of limitation or deadline for a victim to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. In Missouri, you generally have two years from the date of injury to bring your claim to court. Otherwise, you will be barred from pursuing damages. 

Missouri lawmakers recognize that medical malpractice claims pose unique challenges under many circumstances because a patient does not immediately know about their injury or that it is due to medical provider error. However, these challenges do not provide for an indefinite time frame for filing your lawsuit. 

Missouri’s Statute of Repose 

Under Missouri’s statute of repose, a patient cannot file a medical malpractice claim if more than ten years have passed since the medical error, regardless of when the injury was discovered.

Exceptions to the Two-Year Statute of Limitations for Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuits

There are several exceptions to the general two-year statute, but there are three that most often come into play in a cancer misdiagnosis case. 

Minors: If the plaintiff is under 18, they typically have until their 20th birthday—or two years from the day they turn 18—to file their medical malpractice claim.  

Wrongful death: If the misdiagnosis results in the patient’s death, their family will have up to three years to pursue a malpractice claim. 

Failure to inform: If the basis for the misdiagnosis claim is the provider failed to notify the patient of medical test results, the statute begins to run either two years from the date of the discovery of the alleged negligence OR from the date in which the patient, in the exercise of ordinary care, should have discovered the failure to inform, whichever date comes first.

Cancer misdiagnosis cases can be some of the most challenging and complex medical malpractice claims. Speaking with a knowledgeable attorney to protect your rights and options is imperative.

Cancer Misdiagnosis Attorneys

At Dempsey, Kingsland, & Osteen, P.C., we recently recovered a $1 million settlement for a case involving the failure to diagnose cancer results. A doctor misdiagnosing cancer can be devastating and catastrophic to the patient and their family. Let us advocate for you. Contact us to schedule a compassionate, confidential, and no-cost consultation.

To learn how we can put this experience to work for you, contact a medical malpractice misdiagnosis lawyer at Dempsey Kingsland Osteen. Call us at (816) 484-3776.

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