Can I Sue a Doctor for a Wrongful or Delayed Diagnosis?

 Posted on October 23, 2023 in Family Law

DuPage County medical malpractice lawyerNot every misdiagnosis is capable of a medical malpractice claim. However, many still are, and legal action is possible in these circumstances. Doctors are not infallible and can be subject to providing incorrect information or late information that can result in a worsened condition for a patient. Anyone planning to take a doctor or hospital to court should employ the help and guidance of an experienced and skilled attorney.

What is a Wrongful Diagnosis?

Doctors can mistake your condition for something completely unrelated. Some may decide you are suffering from one medical issue when, in fact, you are suffering from something else entirely. An example would be a patient diagnosed with acid reflux when, in fact, they are having a heart attack.

What is a Delayed Diagnosis?

A delayed diagnosis is a diagnosis that comes too late. Though the diagnosis may be correct, a significant delay could see the condition worsening with the possibility of additional complications that may have been prevented if diagnosed earlier.

Can a Doctor Fail to Provide a Diagnosis?

Patients may have multiple conditions in need of a diagnosis when they first enter a doctor’s office or patient room. Failure on the doctor’s part to diagnose all conditions before sending the patient home can result in a failed diagnosis. A doctor may also provide a patient with a clean bill of health when, in fact, the patient was suffering from something the doctor failed to diagnose.

What are Some Common Misdiagnosed Medical Conditions?

Generally speaking, only one in 20 patients are misdiagnosed. This is a pretty good success rate percentage on the part of doctors. However, some common misdiagnoses can land a doctor in hot water:

  • Heart attack
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Lupus
  • Asthma
  • Lyme disease
  • Breast, lung, and colon cancer
  • Appendicitis

What Do I Need to Prove Misdiagnosis?

medical malpractice lawsuit will require a few elements:

  • A doctor-patient relationship
  • Negligence on the doctor’s behalf
  • That negligence caused suffering or injury

Negligence is the more difficult element to prove and will require substantial evidence. Evidence that will help your case includes:

  • The doctor failed to include a diagnosis or a correct diagnosis
  • Necessary tests were not conducted for your medical issue
  • Procedures were not properly followed
  • Consultations were not provided
  • Your condition worsened due to a wrongful or delayed diagnosis
  • Your worsened condition impacted your treatment

You must also bring action against the doctor or hospital within two years of knowing about the misdiagnosis. The exception is for patients under the age of 18 years old who have a disability or for adult patients who have a disability during the two years. The limitations are stayed for those who fall under this exception until the disability is removed.

Contact a DuPage County, IL Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Though proving a medical malpractice claim is difficult, it is still possible and within your rights as a wronged patient to pursue compensation. The Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio will fight for your right to seek compensation for any misdiagnosis you may have suffered. Our firm has experienced Hinsdale, IL medical malpractice attorneys available for a free consultation. Call our office at 630-920-8855 today to discuss your case.

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