When you seek treatment for any type of medical condition, you assume that your doctor will provide the right care. Unfortunately, even the most experienced doctors can make mistakes.
Some medical conditions are more likely to be misdiagnosed than others, including:
- Heart attack: You would think a heart attack would be easy to diagnose, but this is not always the case. The symptoms of a heart attack are shared with many other less serious conditions, such as indigestion. If a heart attack is mistaken for something else, it often results in irreparable damage or death.
- Cancer: Cancer is one of the top causes of death in the United States. It’s difficult enough to beat this disease when you’re diagnosed early. However, if you receive a late diagnosis or misdiagnosis, it lessens the likelihood of successful treatment. Misdiagnosis can come into play with every type of cancer. This is most common with breast, lung and colorectal cancers.
- Stroke: In the case of slow onset stroke, a misdiagnosis is a good possibility. This holds true even with severe symptoms such as poor coordination, confusion and weakness. The sooner you receive treatment for a stroke, the less chance there is that you’ll suffer long-term complications.
How can you protect yourself?
There is no easy way to protect yourself against misdiagnosis, but there are some tips you can follow to improve your odds. These include:
- Track and share all your symptoms with every member of your medical team
- Seek a second opinion if you don’t like the approach your first doctor is taking
- Follow up on any abnormal test results
- Be honest with your doctor
- Don’t ignore symptoms pointing toward trouble
If you have reason to believe you’re the victim of a medical misdiagnosis, it’s important to find a doctor you can trust to provide the right treatment.
Once you have a treatment plan in place, learn more about the cause of the misdiagnosis and the legal steps you can take to protect yourself. You may be able to file a claim against the provider with the goal of receiving compensation.
Visit our website and read our blog for more information on all types of medical malpractice, as well as tips for protecting your legal rights in Kentucky.