If a medical care provider misdiagnosed your health condition, you may be able to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation for the harm that resulted. You will need to prove that a reasonable physician would not have made the error and you will need to demonstrate that the medical mistake was the direct cause of harm to you. A misdiagnosis of a medical condition can result in either a personal injury lawsuit by the patient affected by the mistake or can result in a wrongful death claim if the misdiagnosis results in the patient’s death. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer should be consulted to provide assistance to the victim or surviving family members, as misdiagnosis cases are among the most complicated types of injury claims.
Misdiagnosis and Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice occurs whenever a doctor or healthcare professional provides substandard care below what a reasonable physician would have provided to a patient. If any reasonable doctor would have made a correct diagnosis, then a physician who failed to do so can be held legally accountable. Misdiagnosis was found to be the leading cause of medical malpractice claims against primary care physicians in a July 2013 article in the medical journal, BMJ Open. Estimates indicated that between 26 and 63 percent of claims made against primary care physicians occurred as a result of a misdiagnosed health condition or failure to diagnose a health condition such as heart attack, stroke, cancer, ectopic pregnancy, appendicitis, bone fractures, or meningitis. Brain bleeding and stroke are also conditions that are often misdiagnosed. Common mistakes include failure to diagnose (1) a heart attack; (2) a pulmonary embolism; (3) an ischemic stroke; (4) a hemorrhage stroke; (5) cancer; and/or (6) failure to diagnose or properly treat an infection. Primary care physicians are not the only physicians who can make a diagnostic error that leads to a malpractice claim. Any doctor who provides an assessment of a patient’s medical condition can be liable for a failure to correctly diagnose a condition when a reasonable professional would have. This can include emergency room (ER) physicians as well as specialists and general practitioners.
Getting Legal Help with a Misdiagnosis Lawsuit in Southern Illinois
If you wish to pursue a claim against a doctor for misdiagnosis, it is important to get legal help from a qualified attorney who has experience with these types of cases. Misdiagnosis cases are difficult for plaintiffs to prove because the injured patient must show that the doctor’s actions actually caused injury or caused an adverse outcome. Since a patient with a misdiagnosed condition usually has an underlying health issue, it is very common for doctors to try to argue that the outcome for the patient would have been the same regardless of the treatment provided. Proving that the doctor’s misdiagnosis made things worse can be highly technical and you will need the right evidence and the right expert witnesses to make your case. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer can assist in making a compelling claim so you can get the compensation you deserve for a misdiagnosis that affected you or a loved one.