Errors involving diagnosis can be some of the most dangerous of all medical mistakes because they affect your care right from the beginning. A doctor may have failed to notice critical warning signs, allowing your illness to get worse. Or, you may have been misdiagnosed, that is, diagnosed with the wrong condition, and may have suffered side effects from an incorrect treatment.
Diagnosis is not an exact science, of course. Sometimes, doctors do not have enough information available to diagnose a medical condition for certain. But when doctors overlook visible evidence, misinterpret results or fail to order tests, patients suffer, and those injuries are completely avoidable. If you have been misdiagnosed, speak with a Peru diagnosis error lawyer at Schweickert Ganassin Krzak Rundio, LLP today.
Some of the diagnosis errors we handle include:
- Failure to diagnose: If a serious medical condition such as cancer or heart disease is not diagnosed promptly, the patient’s life may be in danger. A doctor may fail to order necessary tests, such as a biopsy for a suspicious growth that later develops into metastatic cancer. Others may misinterpret the results of tests and state that the patient is healthy when in fact signs of serious health conditions are present.
- Wrong diagnosis: A doctor who fails to follow standards of care may know that something is wrong but misidentify it as an entirely different medical condition. For instance, muscle pain from fibromyalgia may be misdiagnosed as arthritis, and difficulty breathing as a result of heart disease may instead by diagnosed as a respiratory illness. Patients who are misdiagnosed may be prescribed powerful medications to treat an illness that they do not actually have, and meanwhile, the illness that they do have goes untreated.
- Delayed diagnosis: Any delay in treating a medical condition can lead to serious complications. Failing to order necessary tests in a timely manner is one common cause of delayed diagnosis. Hospital emergency rooms often fail to effectively triage patients, leading to delays as well.
- Failure to communicate: In some cases, an illness that is correctly diagnosed by one physician goes unaddressed because of miscommunication. For example, a patient’s labs of diagnostic images may reveal a deadly condition, but that information fails to pass along to the patient’s treating physician.
Doctors are required to follow certain standards of care as they work to help their patients get better. When they don’t meet that standard, they need to be held accountable. With over 120 years of combined experience handling medical malpractice and complex injury cases, we know how to successfully represent victims of misdiagnosis. Our legal team will bring in outside experts to review your records and prove that a doctor overlooked evidence or failed to order necessary tests and treatment.
In Illinois, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice is generally two years from the date you knew or should have known malpractice occurred or four years from the date of the malpractice itself, whichever comes first. This may seem like a long time, but remember that diagnosis errors often do not become known for months or years after the original mistake. That’s why it’s so important to contact us right away, as soon as you have reason to believe you may have been misdiagnosed. Any delay could affect your right to compensation.
If a medical provider let you down, we’ll work hard to help you get back up. Contact us for your free consultation.