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Personal Injury Law Blog

Failure to diagnose medical conditions is a serious issue

Patients who go into a doctor’s office with a medical complaint deserve to get an accurate diagnosis. When an accurate diagnosis isn’t made in a timely manner, the patient can suffer from a worsened condition or other negative effects of the delayed diagnosis.

Many people tend to think of failure to diagnose a medical condition as a serious matter only when it is associated with a condition like cancer or a heart attack since those can be fatal if they aren’t diagnosed. Those, however, aren’t the only medical conditions that can lead to patient harm if they aren’t diagnosed accurately and promptly. Other conditions can also be missed because the symptoms mimic other conditions or the patient isn’t having the classic symptoms of the condition.

Conditions that don’t lead to a rapid health decline in the patient are also commonly missed. However, because these conditions, such as hypertension and diabetes, don’t cause severe injury quickly, they are often not thought of when it comes to a failure to diagnose an issue.

Some of the other conditions that are commonly undiagnosed include osteoporosis, sleep disorders, toxoplasmosis, obstructive sleep apnea, thyroid disorders, migraines, chlamydia, glaucoma, narcolepsy, AIDS, celiac disease, aneurysms, and Parkinson’s disease.

In all of these cases, the patient could exhibit symptoms of the disease, but they aren’t diagnosed when those symptoms are presented to a medical professional. In some instances, the patient might have the condition but might not have the symptoms of it.

If you or a loved one was harmed by an incorrect or completely missed diagnosis, you may have legal recourse. An experienced South Carolina medical malpractice attorney can advise you regarding your particular situation.

Source: Right Diagnosis, “How Common is Failure to Diagnose?,” accessed June 09, 2016