When you see your doctor, whether for a regular check-up or because of a specific concern, you are looking for answers to questions you have. Often, that question is simply “What’s wrong with me?” Unfortunately, the answer to that question is not always simple. In fact, with alarming regularity, physicians get the answer to that question wrong. When a doctor fails to make the correct diagnosis or even recognize that there is a medical issue at all, the results can be tragic. A patient may not receive the treatments they need or may even undergo unnecessary surgeries and embark on dangerous courses of treatment that make them worse.
Diagnosing many conditions can be difficult. But if doctors, oncologists, radiologists, and other healthcare professionals are negligent in making their determinations as to a patient’s condition and make an incorrect diagnosis, it can be the basis of a medical malpractice claim. In fact, one study concluded that misdiagnoses are the leading cause of medical malpractice payouts, totaling nearly $39 billion over the past 25 years.
At Alley, Clark & Greiwe, our experienced Tampa medical malpractice attorneys help and fight for individuals and families who are dealing with the consequences of a misdiagnosis. We work tirelessly to obtain compensation for victims of medical malpractice and are fiercely determined to hold doctors accountable for their avoidable mistakes.
Millions of Misdiagnoses Every Year
Misdiagnoses result in thousands of serious and avoidable medical problems and deaths every year. According to a 2014 study in the medical journal BMJ Quality & Safety, approximately 12 million American adults are misdiagnosed each year, amounting to 1 of every 20 adult patients. The study found that in about half of those cases, the incorrect diagnosis had the potential to cause severe harm to the patient.
Cancer misdiagnoses were some of the most common, along with incorrect diagnoses of infections, pulmonary embolisms, heart attacks, and cardiovascular disease.
Causes of Misdiagnoses
A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that some of the most common reasons for misdiagnosis include:
- Failure to order appropriate diagnostic tests;
- Errors by doctors in interpreting test results.
- Inadequate physical examination
- Disregarding patient complaints
- Failure or delay in referring a patient to a specialist
- Failure to perform regular screenings
- Failure to provide appropriate follow-up care
Contact a Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you believe that you or a loved one has suffered because of a missed or delayed diagnosis, or you believe you have been a victim of other forms of medical malpractice, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Recovering such compensation requires the filing of a medical malpractice lawsuit. Such suits are extremely complicated, and many investigatory steps need to be taken before you can file a claim for compensation.
The experienced Tampa medical malpractice attorneys at the law firm of Alley, Clark & Greiwe are Board-certified trial attorneys and have been recognized by the legal community for their experience and knowledge in litigating claims for persons who have been victims of serious medical errors, including misdiagnoses. Please call us at 813-222-0977 or contact us online to arrange for your free case evaluation.