Misdiagnosis, Missed Diagnosis
and Your Medical Malpractice Claim
Whether there has been a misdiagnosis or a missed diagnosis of a serious medical condition is critical when evaluating a medical malpractice claim.
About five percent (5%) of a patient’s medical treatment are considered misdiagnoses or missed diagnoses. While the percentage may look small, the impact on the patient’s healthcare is huge. But identifying the difference between misdiagnosis and missed diagnosis is important. Why? Because it can guide a patient in deciding whether he or she has a viable medical malpractice claim against a medical provider.
Misdiagnosis v. Missed Diagnosis:
There is a Difference
Misdiagnosis is when a medical doctor tells you that you have an illness or condition, but it is incorrect. In other words, the doctor made a mistake. Such a mistake on the part of your doctor can be life threatening if the misdiagnosis applies to a serious disease such as cancer, i.e. the doctor erroneously says you have cancer, but he is wrong.
A physician’s conduct may be beneath the level of care for the professional who fails to order timely screenings, uses outdated tools and procedures, or simply fails to diagnose cancer or a serious, life threatening disease or condition. These mistakes, on the part of physicians, deprive patients of life-saving treatment options. A cancer misdiagnosis lawsuit can help offset medical bills, lost income and psychological treatment costs.
Missed diagnosis, on the other hand, describes the lack of a diagnosis, usually leading to no treatment or inaccurate treatment. In other words, a missed diagnosis can refer to a critical omission on the part of the physician or medical provider. A missed diagnosis, like a misdiagnosis, can have life threatening consequences. An example would be when a woman is told the small lump in her breast is benign, only to learn later that it is, in fact malignant.
Conversely, a patient may be showing symptoms of an illness or medical condition and sees his or her doctor for an analysis. If the patient concerned is dismissed too quickly or the doctor only performs a cursory exam before declaring everything is okay, that is a missed diagnosis.
A missed diagnosis can lead to worsened medical conditions and a poorer prognosis through the lost opportunity for earlier care.
Misdiagnosis Medical Malpractice Attorneys
Whenever you are considering a medical malpractice lawsuit, your first step is to obtain your complete medical records from the physician or medical provider you are alleging committed the malpractice. Your case is stronger if you discover the medical malpractice while obtaining subsequent or remedial treatment by another doctor.
Please call (662) 342-7007 or schedule an appointment immediately for a free consultation of your medical malpractice claim.
Our attorneys are licensed in Mississippi and Tennessee.