Medical malpractice happens more frequently than reported, and many people may not even be aware that they are a victim of malpractice or negligence until it is too late. The most common medical error happens to be a diagnostic error either by misdiagnosis or a delayed diagnosis.
When patients are rushed to the ER, doctors and staff are pressured to quickly diagnose and treat the problems and move onto the next patient. Unfortunately, the current process for treating patients in the ER has led to a 25% error rate of misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis incidents.
Getting an accurate diagnosis may be crucial to saving a patient’s life. In the event the patient has cancer, the chances of surviving are much higher if the cancer is caught in the early stages, but if the cancer is misdiagnosed or there was a delay in the diagnosis, the patient may have a more difficult time battling the cancer.
The Journal of American Medicine released a study in 2009 which investigated 583 incidents of misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis.
The results showed an alarming percentage of patients were either moderately affected or seriously affected by the diagnosis errors.
The study also investigated what adverse events were missed due to the misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis. If not treated right away or caught early, these injuries may become life threatening.
A physical examination by the doctor may not be enough to give an accurate diagnosis, and there are times where samples may need to be sent to a lab for further analysis. During this phase of the diagnosis process, there are many steps that must be followed, and if any of the steps are missed, it could lead to a critical error in diagnosis. The study from JAMA also revealed this is where many of the problems with misdiagnosis happen.
If you believe a misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis by your doctor resulted in a serious injury, then you should speak with one of our trial lawyers right away about your legal rights to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit. Due to the seriousness of the injuries and problems that are involved, misdiagnosis is the most frequent medical error that is litigated in medical malpractice cases.
A misdiagnosis may prove to be fatal, and in many cases may lead to a life-threatening injury. Don’t let hospital negligence and misdiagnosis errors go unreported. Call us right now for a free consultation to see if you have a claim for medical malpractice.