When you don’t feel right, when you are ill or are in pain and unsure what the problem is or what do to about it, you count on your doctor to use his or her skills, training and experience to provide you with the answer to the question, “What’s wrong with me?” Unfortunately, the answer is not always simple. In fact, with alarming frequency, physicians get the answer to that question wrong.
As a result of a misdiagnosis, a patient may not receive the life-saving treatments he or she needs. Unnecessary surgeries or medication may be recommended, and other inappropriate courses of treatment could actually make the patient’s condition worse. If doctors, oncologists, radiologists, and other healthcare professionals are negligent in making their determinations as to a patient’s condition, such conduct could 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 the Patrick Yancey Law Firm, our experienced Louisiana medical malpractice lawyers help individuals and families who have been harmed or suffered losses as a result of a misdiagnosis. We work tirelessly to obtain compensation for victims of medical malpractice and have the experience and commitment to hold physicians accountable for avoidable mistakes like misdiagnoses.
Millions of Misdiagnoses Every Year
Misdiagnoses result in thousands of serious medical problems and deaths every year. A 2014 study in the medical journal BMJ Quality & Safety concluded that approximately 12 million American adults are misdiagnosed each year, equaling 1 of every 20 patients. The study found that in about half of those cases, the incorrect diagnosis had the potential to cause the patient severe harm.
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 examinations.
- 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.
How We Can Help
As challenging as making the right diagnosis can sometimes be, it can be even more difficult to challenge a physician’s conduct and prove that he or she breached the requisite standard of care when evaluating a patient and diagnosing a condition.
The Louisiana medical malpractice attorneys at the Patrick Yancey Law Firm not only have a mastery of the law but also have the knowledge, courtroom skills, and resources to effectively explain complex medical issues to a jury and expose medical negligence. Our fierce advocacy has earned us a reputation as champions for Louisianans who have been hurt or lost a loved one because of medical malpractice.
The Patrick Yancey Law Firm: Speak With a Louisiana Misdiagnosis Attorney Today
If you believe that a doctor or other healthcare professional misdiagnosed your medical condition or that of a loved one, please call us today to arrange for your free initial case evaluation. We welcome the opportunity to assist you.