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Failure to Diagnose

There is a reason healthcare professionals are required to undergo years of schooling and training: they have an important job. They are responsible for recognizing if you show signs or symptoms of a vast number of medical conditions. They’re also responsible for knowing risk factors that could make it more likely you could develop a medical condition, and determining if you have those risk factors. If you have symptoms a doctor doesn’t understand, they have the responsibility of doing what they can to help you find an answer in a timely manner. For example, they should refer you to a specialist.

Forty percent of all Medical Malpractice Claims are comprised of failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis claims. Recent medical advancements in disease detection and treatment mean that the failure to diagnose a medical condition could most certainly impact the result of treatment or whether treatment will be an option.

A failure to diagnose can occur in many ways: It can occur via improper conducting of a physical examination, failing to perform regular screenings in high-risk patients, misinterpreting test results, missing potential indications of a problem, failing to order appropriate tests when they are indicated, or failing to refer a patient. Commonly, medical providers fail to document a differential diagnosis at the first visit in more than 80% of misdiagnosis cases.

Regardless of the cause of a failure to diagnose or misdiagnose, innocent people can suffer very serious harm as a result, such as medical complications, the need for more expensive or aggressive treatments, permanent bodily injury, decreased survival rates, shortened life spans, or death. Heart disease, stroke, breast cancer and colon cancer are among the most common diseases that doctors can fail to diagnose.

Doctors have many responsibilities and they are held accountable. You have responsibilities too! At all times you need to be completely upfront with your medical providers regarding your personal habits and medical history. You must do your best to explain to your doctors what is troubling you. Doctors can avoid accountability for failing to diagnose if you did not keep them adequately informed.

Proving that a health care provider failed to properly or timely diagnose a medical condition can be a meticulous process. In all cases involving failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis, our attorneys rely on the support of seasoned expert medical professional in a wide array of expertise across the country. With the assistance of these experts, we will use your medical records and facts to prove:

  • the health care provider in question did truly fail to diagnose a medical condition and/or take the necessary steps to refer the patient to a specialist to facilitate a diagnosis,
  • that failure constituted a departure from the standard of care (in other words, what a reasonable physician would do in similar circumstances), and
  • failing to diagnose or timely diagnose the victim with their illness caused them to suffer further medical complications, injuries, or death.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of an improper or an untimely medical diagnosis, contact the experienced attorneys at the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA today. Call us anytime via our toll free number: 1-888-219-7481