One of the most common ways that doctors, nurses, hospitals, and other
medical providers harm their patients is though
misdiagnosing or delaying the diagnosis of a medical condition that results in a delay
or lack of necessary treatment. While not every misdiagnosis is enough
to warrant a medical malpractice lawsuit, there are numerous times that
the failure to identify this important information can put your health
and safety on the line.
How was I harmed by misdiagnosis?
As with any
medical malpractice case, there are a three main factors that must be present in order to
prove malpractice. First, it must be shown that the doctor and the patient
had a professional and medical relationship with one another. Second,
the doctor must have provided a substandard level of care that another
doctor in the same situation would not have provided. Third, the doctor’s
negligence and lowered standard of care resulted in the serious harm of
the patient in their care. This means that the misdiagnosis of the doctor
must have resulted in harm.
Some ways that a patient can be misdiagnosed for an ailment include:
Misdiagnosis, or choosing the wrong illness
- Missed diagnosis, claiming the patient is fine
- Delayed diagnosis, preventing needed treatment from occurring
- Failure to recognize complications
Failure to diagnose a related or unrelated disease
Misdiagnosis oftentimes occurs in
emergency situations where there is less time to investigate all of the potential symptoms
and their associated diagnoses, especially when they occur in populations
that less commonly experience those ailments.
While simply misdiagnosing a patient cannot be considered negligence, each
case must be carefully considered to determine if the doctor did all that
they could have when arriving at the diagnosis they did. This means that
a medical malpractice attorney must show that the doctor did consider
a particular diagnosis when looking at the symptoms of the patient and
another doctor with the same skill would have identified this concern,
or that the doctor considered a diagnosis but did not pursue additional
tests or specialists to take further actions. Even more, if the tools
used in making the diagnosis were faulty, then additional people may be
held accountable for the misdiagnosis.
Have you been harmed due to the misdiagnosis of a doctor? Contact our
Portland medical malpractice attorney to
discuss your options for compensation!