If you believe that you or a loved one has experienced harm due to a missed diagnosis, it is important to consult with a medical malpractice attorney. The experienced medical malpractice attorneys at De Caro & Kaplen, LLP can evaluate the details of your case, review medical records, consult with medical experts, and determine whether you have grounds for a legal claim to seek compensation for the injuries and damages you have suffered.
Contact our attorneys today to find out how we can help with your New York misdiagnosis case.
A Missed Diagnosis Can Be Disastrous
A missed diagnosis can be disastrous for patients. When a healthcare professional fails to accurately diagnose a medical condition or fails to diagnose it promptly, it can lead to delayed or improper treatment, causing further harm, progression of the disease, or even death.
There are various reasons a diagnosis may be missed or delayed. Some common factors include:
- Inadequate medical history: If a healthcare provider does not gather a comprehensive medical history or fails to ask relevant questions about symptoms, it can lead to an incorrect or incomplete diagnosis.
- Errors in diagnostic testing: Failing to order or misinterpreting diagnostic tests, such as laboratory tests, imaging studies, or biopsies, can result in inaccurate diagnoses or failing to detect a condition.
- Miscommunication and lack of coordination: There may be a breakdown in communication between healthcare providers, leading to important information being missed or not shared among the medical team.
The consequences of a missed diagnosis can vary depending on the specific condition involved. Patients may experience unnecessary pain and suffering, require more invasive treatments, experience complications, or face a worsened prognosis due to delayed intervention.
Frequently encountered areas of misdiagnosis:
- Cancer: A healthcare provider may misinterpret symptoms or dismiss them as unrelated to cancer, leading to a delayed diagnosis. Persistent cough, nipple discharge, failure to investigate a lump, or bleeding, are often overlooked.
- Heart attack: Symptoms of a heart attack can be diverse and may present differently in men and women. Sometimes, healthcare providers may not recognize the signs or attribute them to other conditions, resulting in a missed or delayed diagnosis.
- Stroke: The symptoms of a stroke are frequently ignored by medical professionals or confused with other ailments. If a stroke is not promptly diagnosed, timely interventions to minimize brain damage may be missed.
- Infections: Infections are often misdiagnosed because signs and symptoms are ignored, or proper testing was not performed to determine the source of infection and its type. Delayed treatment can lead to disastrous complications.
According to a report published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 1 in 18 patients in the United States receives an incorrect diagnosis in hospital emergency departments.
Five of the top ten misdiagnosed conditions in the study were related to brain injury and brain damage.
In the video below, De Caro & Kaplen, LLP partner Michael V. Kaplen discusses the findings of the study.