Why an Incorrect Diagnosis is Considered Medical Malpractice

September 22, 2019 in Uncategorized | MARTIN WREN, P.C. | LEAVE A COMMENT

Medical Malpractice Lawyer

An attorney has witnessed the many ways that a doctor’s incorrect diagnosis can be devastating to a patient’s health. It is important to us to educate the public about what medical malpractice looks like, so they know when to pursue compensation. Misdiagnosis is one of the leading reasons for medical malpractice lawsuits, and is also a top cause of patient fatalities. Every year in America, thousands of patients pass away due to delayed, incorrect, or missed diagnosis. As a doctor or hospital that makes such a huge error, there surely can be a hefty price to pay. 

Medical Standard of Care

Patients may suffer needlessly if a doctor doesn’t diagnose them with the correct illness within a reasonable time frame. When meeting with an attorney, one of the elements of your case we will look at the most is whether the doctor deviated from a certain standard of medical care. Essentially, your doctor probably offered you less than acceptable care if a doctor similarly trained to yours would not have made the same mistake. In general, wrongful diagnosis happen due to medical practitioners who:

  • Misinterpret lab or other test results
  • Failed to transfer patients to specialists
  • Failed to order suitable screening tests for diseases
  • Did not spend sufficient time with patients to address symptoms
  • Failed to follow up with their patients about test results

There may be instances where it wasn’t the doctor’s error, but instead the laboratory workers did not perform the test correctly or somehow interfered with the test itself. Your attorney can investigate further to see who may have been at-fault for a skewed health test.

When a Missed Diagnosis Causes Harm

If your doctor make a mistake but it didn’t cause you harm or financial loss, then you don’t really have grounds for a medical malpractice claim. It is a requirement of your lawsuit that you suffered in some way, hence why compensation is sought. You cannot just sue a doctor for a harmless error. Unless the oversight caused injury, your chances of winning a medical malpractice lawsuit is slim. Two elements must be present as the basis of a medical malpractice claim:

  1. An illness or injury was overlooked by a medical professional/provider
  2. Measurable damages and losses resulted from this oversight, such as physical harm, mental anguish, loss of life, unnecessary additional medical expenses, loss of future income, etc. 

To reiterate, if your doctor had initially not observed an injury or illness and then corrected the mistake within a reasonable time and it did not cause harm, then there is very little foundation for a medical malpractice lawsuit. If you are unsure whether your situation entitles you to financial compensation, then we encourage you to meet with a medical malpractice lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, FL right away. 

Thanks to Needle & Ellenberg, P.A. for their insight into medical malpractice and misdiagnosis

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We serve clients throughout Virginia — from Charlottesville and Central Virginia to metropolitan Richmond; Harrisonburg and the Shenandoah Valley to Roanoke; and the cities of Hampton Roads to the Northern Virginia cities of  Fairfax, Alexandria and Arlington.

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Our Virginia personal injury lawyers at MartinWren, P.C. have a statewide practice and offer free consultations at a time and location that is convenient for you.  We will gladly meet with you at your home or at the hospital, even on nights and weekends.


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