At least 12 million patients are misdiagnosed each year, with anywhere from 80,000 to 120,000 patients suffering annually from a permanent injury or death due to a potential preventable misdiagnosis-related event.
A misdiagnosis error is a diagnosis that is missed, wrong, or delayed. These errors result in a patient not receiving the necessary treatment needed for their condition. This can occur due to the negligence of a health care professional in overlooking an important detail or misreading a test, or it can occur due to things outside of the professional’s control like equipment failure or lab mistakes and mix-ups.
Medical malpractice cases in Chicago dealing with diagnosis errors like an incorrect diagnosis of an illness, condition, or injury, can be very difficult. In these cases, establishing an error is not enough; it must also be established that another competent doctor under the exact same circumstances would not have misdiagnosed the patient.
Regardless of the root cause of an incorrect diagnosis, if you or a loved one has suffered because of a mistake like this, you may be entitled to seek legal relief for your damages. When mistakes have serious and life altering consequences, they cannot and should not be ignored.
Misdiagnoses are Unfortunately Everyday Occurrences in Illinois
A report by the Institute of Medicine in 2015 following the misdiagnosis of a patient determined that on average, people will experience at least one wrong or delayed diagnosis over their lifetime.
Similarly, a study conducted at John Hopkins University School of Medicine found that diagnostic errors account for the largest fraction of medical malpractice claims, they result in the most severe patient harm and they have the highest total of penalty payouts. Diagnosis-related payments from medical malpractice suits between 1986 and 2010 reached $38.8 billion dollars. The study found that misdiagnoses are a growing and dangerous trend that do not receive necessary attention in the medical field.
These problems are only exasperated by the lack of transparency in the health care industry. Too often, patients do not know how to effectively communicate to a doctor that treatment is not working or they worry that they are being “too difficult.” Furthermore, in many cases doctors are never informed of a misdiagnosis as the mistake stems from another professional or the patient makes the decision to consult another doctor for a second opinion. However, with misdiagnoses becoming a frequent and growing problem, those health care professionals who make these negligent mistakes must be held accountable to prevent future and further damage to others.
A misdiagnosis often leads to a situation where a patient suffers on two fronts. First, the proper diagnosis is not made and therefore the actual illness or injury is not treated appropriately. But second, an incorrect diagnosis is made and a nonexistent condition is treated. This means that the real problem can worsen or even become permanent while unnecessary treatment may harm a patient, aggravate other conditions, or enact unneeded pain and suffering.
Any delay in the appropriate treatment may lead to a worsening of conditions and can often result in paralysis, loss of bodily function, loss of sensation, stroke, pulmonary embolism, heart attack, or even death.
Legal Relief for Victims of a Wrong Diagnosis
Given the complexity of medical malpractice cases, having an attorney who is experienced is essential. The attorneys at Abels and Annes, P.C. in Chicago have the qualifications to help you receive the compensation you rightfully deserve.
If you or a loved one suffered from a misdiagnosis or you have experienced the painful tragedy of losing a loved one due to a misdiagnosis, please contact Abels and Annes, P.C. today. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year ready to offer you a no obligation, free consultation. Call us today toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO (529-2442) or locally at (312) 924-7575 to receive a case consultation or contact us online at your convenience.
If the wrong diagnosis led you to suffer from harm, call Abels & Annes, P.C. today toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO for a free case consultation without obligation.