Unfortunately, medical misdiagnosis is one of the leading causes of medical malpractice today. Being diagnosed with a different condition or illness may cause numerous problems for a patient who is affected. First of all, the patient may believe that the doctor is accurate and may pursue a course of treatment that he or she does not need.
When you visit the doctor’s office to discuss a problem or symptoms that recently emerged, you and trust that doctor to fully evaluate you and request any additional diagnostic tests to determine your official diagnosis.
Unfortunately, however if the doctor does not pay enough attention or does not order the right path, you may be treated for a condition that you do not have or you may avoid any treatments at all, that’s compromising your health in the short and long-term.
In situations where the doctor was negligent with his or her care to you, you may be eligible to file a misdiagnosis medical malpractice claim after speaking with an experienced Maryland attorney.
What if I’ve Gotten Treatment That I Didn’t Need?
This can prove extremely problematic as this may result in other risks and side effects that were completely unnecessary. By the time a patient uncovers that these medical treatments were not necessary, he or she may already have suffered for several weeks or for several months.
Staying engaged as a patient is critical to pointing out potential symptoms that may still exist even after the doctor has begun to treat the misdiagnosed condition. Another problem that can emerge for a patient who is the victim of misdiagnosis is that he or she will not receive critical treatments needed to stop the actual medical condition.
This means that they may be missing out on days, week or months of treatments that could help to improve their quality of life, address symptoms or eradicate the condition altogether.
Discovering that you have been a victim of medical misdiagnosis can be extremely frustrating and overwhelming if you have never been in this position before.
Discovering that Your Condition is Persistent
One of the leading concerns to pay attention to regarding misdiagnosis has to do with the emergence, resurgence, or a set of symptoms that continues to get worse over time.
If the doctor has misdiagnosed you with another condition, you may continue to receive a treatment for this inaccurate condition but you need to keep your doctor informed of the issues that you are continuing to experience.
If the doctor mistakenly believes that you have another condition, he or she may still continue to encourage you to pursue separate types of treatment unless you speak up and share your issues and symptoms.
Defining Diagnostic Errors
Diagnostic errors are defined as missed, inaccurate or delayed diagnoses and these account for between 40,000 and 80,000 deaths in the United States every year. According to patient safety experts in the field, diagnosis is an aspect of medicine that has minimal research funding and does not receive enough attention.
There are more than 10,000 diagnosable conditions that a patient may be afflicted with and it is estimated that at least 200 new ones are added every single year. With more than 5000 laboratory tests available, not every doctor can have or will have the right answer.
One September 2015 research study called Diagnostic Error and Healthcare, used autopsies to identify that one in 10 patient deaths requiring an autopsy was the result of a delayed or an inaccurate diagnosis.
Improved communication between patients and providers is an essential element to catching a misdiagnosis situation sooner rather than later. Pointing out your concerns to the physician can help to avoid future complications and help you realize the severity of a doctor’s misdiagnosis. It is better to act sooner rather than later.
Consult with Washington DC Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
In the event that you or someone you know has been a victim of misdiagnosis, you may have grounds for a medical malpractice claim. Consulting with a lawyer immediately is strongly recommended so that you can more clearly understand your rights going forward and determine your next steps. Reach out to an experienced Maryland medical malpractice attorney immediately to learn more about what is best for you.