When You Were Misdiagnosed and Find Out You Have CancerNew Jersey Legal News
Some diseases and conditions are not obvious. For instance, your doctor might mistake gastritis, an inflammation of the stomach lining, for the flu, based on the symptoms that you exhibit. Doctors have been known to not always get things right the first time. However, when it comes to certain diseases that can be life-threatening in nature, a diagnostic error could be extremely devastating for your health. This is especially true in cases of serious diseases like cancer, which can very easily take lives and cause lasting and damaging harm.
Why Cancer is Typically Misdiagnosed
Misdiagnosis is becoming more and more popular in cases each year. In fact, more than 20 percent of people who have sought a second opinion have found that they were misdiagnosed with their condition by their primary care providers. Many people wonder how, with all of the different diagnostic techniques we have today and how far medical science has come, how can cancer ever be missed?
Based on a routine examination, cancer is sometimes found by medical professionals. Most people receive their initial diagnosis because they have gone to their doctor with a variety of symptoms that are strange to them or are impacting aspects of their lives. As a patient, it is never your responsibility to know that your symptoms point to cancer–this is what your medical professional is supposed to find out when you go to them. The main reason why many people are not diagnosed right off the bat is that cancer is difficult to spot, as all cancers bring different symptoms and some might not produce symptoms at all until it has spread.
There are many ways that a doctor might fail to diagnose cancer, including the following:
- Failure to perform a physical examination
- Failure to look into a patient’s history
- Failure to follow up with a patient
- Failure to recognize a patient’s symptoms early on
- Failure to recommend a cancer screening
- Failure to refer to specialists
The issue with many cancer misdiagnosis cases is the fact that the misdiagnosis could make a difference between somebody receiving the care they need and not being able to get the treatment that responds to cancer. For instance, cancers like breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, and many other common types are more likely to be treated if they are caught early. They are more likely to wreak havoc on a person’s life and cause lasting trauma or even death if they are not caught early enough and are instead caught in the later stages.
The truth is, early detection is typically the key to survival when cancer is at play. Cancer cells only multiply over time, which can impair all bodily functions and cause cancer to spread to other parts of your body. This means that, over time, when the cancer is actually caught, you might require more invasive and aggressive treatment such as radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery in vast amounts. This means that your chance of complications or not surviving cancer goes up, which should always be avoided when you are in the care of a professional.
If You Have Received a Late Cancer Diagnosis
Perhaps you are in a desperate situation where cancer has spread and now you are suffering severe complications due to the disease. After you have finally been diagnosed, it is important to look back on your journey and how many professionals you have seen as well as take a comprehensive look at the symptoms that you had before you were diagnosed so you can hold proper parties liable. It can be an emotional time to realize that death can be avoided if medical providers had acted in a proper manner. Early death from cancer or aggressive treatment can cause financial hardship on the patient or their family, as well as lost wages from missed work and additional healthcare costs. In some cases, a misdiagnosis could also lead to permanent disability.
Many people suspect that they were not diagnosed in a timely fashion when it comes to finding out that they have cancer. Perhaps they have been experiencing symptoms for months but never knew that this horrific disease was leaving an irreversible impact on their life. As such, a victim might be able to compensate for aspects like medical bills of the past and present, rehabilitation, lost wages, loss of enjoyment of life, pain and suffering, and even funeral expenses for a surviving family if a loved one lost their life.
Trusting Your Instincts When It Comes to Medical Care
Many people go to the doctor every year suspecting the worst based on their symptoms, only to be told that they are fine and do not require care without proper testing. You should always trust your instincts in these cases. If the diagnosis doesn’t fit the symptoms or you are being told that what you are experiencing is normal, you should always see your doctor or go to an urgent care clinic. You can also ask for a second opinion, especially if you feel that your life is on the line. These are important health matters that you can take in your own hands.
The Help of a New Jersey Medical Malpractice Attorney
Our experienced personal injury attorneys at Brady, Brady & Reilly have years of collective experience advocating for the rights of those who have fallen victim to malpractice. Many people want to trust their doctors with anything, only to find out that they have betrayed their trust in the worst way. Our medical malpractice attorneys will listen to you and answer any questions you have regarding your claim. Please contact us at (201) 997-0030 to find out how we can assist you in your time of need.