The United States is known to have some of the best physicians and healthcare providers on the planet. For the most part, many of us tend to trust our doctors and their medical advice since they are experts in the field of medicine. Sometimes, however, in our blind acceptance of medical advice our doctors may offer, we may forget that they are human and can make mistakes, mistakes which may lead us as patients to experience an adverse event, be left in a worsened condition due to wrong or delayed treatment and suffer harm.
Unfortunately, it is only after a patient has suffered harm such as the spread of a disease that one may realize that a medical error such as a failure to diagnose, failure to administer the right test or treatment has occurred. In cases where, despite early intervention, an illness or disease progresses and leaves a patient in a worsened condition because of the wrong diagnosis, then the patient may have grounds to hold the healthcare provider liable for the harm done.
Failing to diagnose a medical condition or illness is an example of a medical mistake. However, it is important to keep in mind that sometimes a medical condition may not be easy to diagnose. Thus, the primary question to ask to determine if a misdiagnosis has occurred or not is to ask if another healthcare provider under the given situation such as the patients symptoms, tests results and the like, would come up with the same diagnosis. In medicine the answers may not always be clear, and even peer doctors may have differences in opinion when it comes to diagnosis and treatment.
Thus, it is important for anyone who feels that their healthcare provider failed to diagnose their condition and left them in a worsened condition to seek the legal opinion of an experienced medical malpractice attorney or law firm to determine if they have a viable medical malpractice lawsuit.
Source: FindLaw, “Failed/Erroneous Diagnosis and Treatment,” Accessed Feb. 16, 2015