Chicago Failure To Diagnose Lawyers
Holding Negligent Doctors Accountable
When a doctor fails to diagnose your medical condition, it can have serious consequences. We put our trust in medical workers to identify a disease to increase our chances of recovery. A doctor’s failure to diagnose is a form of medical malpractice because such negligence can cause significant injury.
Statistics reveal that about 40 percent of all medical malpractice claims are due to the failure to diagnose a condition. As a patient, your need for additional treatment and your chance of survival depend on how early your illness is identified. When detected in its later stages, you may be required to undergo extensive and more aggressive treatment. Put simply, you receive a better standard of care when health care providers offer a correct diagnosis as soon as possible. With certain medical conditions, a delayed diagnosis can allow your disease to progress into advanced stages and mean the difference between life and death.
At Walner Law®, our Chicago failure-to-diagnose lawyers are here to help.
Failure-To-Diagnose Signs and Symptoms
It is your doctor’s responsibility to recognize the signs and symptoms of a medical condition. If you describe a symptom to your doctor that they cannot diagnose, they are responsible for determining the cause.
If you are prone to developing a certain illness (based on family history, lifestyle habits, etc.), your doctor should:
- Know what these high-risk illnesses and medical conditions are and know how to identify them.
- Carefully monitor you to see if your risk factors have increased.
- Educate you on the symptoms so you can watch for any indications of a particular disease.
If your doctor fails to diagnose, gives you a late diagnosis, or misdiagnoses your condition, you may not be able to receive early treatment that may prevent your condition from worsening, resulting in serious injury, wrongful death, or the need for aggressive medical care that could have been avoided with a proper diagnosis.
Why Do Failure-To-Diagnose or Diagnostic Errors Occur?
Medical negligence can happen for any number of reasons. Sometimes, it may be due to incompetence while other times, errors may have been made that could have been avoided. Some of the most common reasons why diagnoses are not made, made incorrectly, or even postponed include:
- Fragmented Care: Some people may not rely on the support of their primary care physicians to address medical problems. Instead, they may rely on a network of specialists to assess their current health, make diagnoses, and provide care. When a fragmented network of health care providers exists, it can be easy for one or multiple doctors to miss out on existing health issues, especially if they don’t have access to the necessary medical records.
- Minimal Experience: It can be difficult for a healthcare provider to do a great job treating you if they have limited experience or believe they have all the answers. Doctors need to take care to avoid a medical errors in your diagnosis and treatment. Failure to do so regardless of the reason can open them up to a misdiagnosis claim.
- Failure To Test: Doctors who believe they know what you’re dealing with might not order the right tests to see what the test results reveal. This can postpone proper care because they’re providing the wrong treatment to you believing that they know exactly what’s affecting your health and wellness instead of taking the time to learn more about what your symptoms indicate.
- No Follow-Up: If you’re dealing with a serious medical condition, whether it be high blood pressure or breast cancer, doctors need to follow up. When doctors do not check in on the treatment or progression of a disease, it can lead to symptoms worsening over time, impacting you further and putting you at greater risk of injury or other medical issues.
- Not Enough Time Given for Care: Your doctor should not be rushing you out of the waiting room. However, some may do so believing they know what a patient is dealing with and not wishing to examine the symptoms further. If a doctor continues to refuse to examine your symptoms, it’s the doctor’s negligence that can lead to your worsening health problems. This might demand prompt medical treatment that greatly affects you or lead to wrongful death should they not be able to treat the condition in time.
An accurate diagnosis is critical to proper treatment. Unfortunately, not everyone receives the level of care they deserve, which can lead to more medical treatment down the road, extensive medical bills, and a difficult time fully recovering (if death doesn’t occur).
Diseases That Are Commonly Undiagnosed
Failure to diagnose can occur for nearly any medical condition. Common diseases that fail to be diagnosed include:
- Cancer: Regular screening tests like Pap smears and colonoscopies can detect cancer in its early stages. If these tests are not performed, performed incorrectly, or misread, cancer can go unnoticed.
- Heart Disease: A doctor’s inability to recognize risk factors can make therapeutic treatment useless. This can lead to a serious or fatal heart attack.
- Meningitis: When diagnosed early, antibiotics can treat this condition and prevent meningitis from spreading and infecting others. The symptoms of this disease are similar to the flu, so this condition is often misdiagnosed.
Contact Our Experienced Chicago Failure-To-Diagnose Lawyers
If you or a loved one is a victim of malpractice, there are legal options at your disposal to support you as you navigate a malpractice claim and receive the justice you deserve. Here at Walner Law, our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers are always just a phone call away and ready to support you in your lawsuit if you’re a victim of medical negligence as a result of a doctor failing to diagnose or providing a misdiagnosis. Your initial call to Walner Law is always free, and our medical malpractice lawyers work on a contingency basis. This means that we will never charge you a fee unless we win your case.