What is the Most Common Medical Error?
What is Medical Misdiagnosis?
Medical misdiagnosis occurs when a patient is suffering from one type of illness, but a doctor diagnoses them with another condition. When this occurs, patients do not receive the treatment they need for the actual condition they are suffering from but instead, they receive treatment for something else. The treatment patients receive likely will not help the condition they have, and worse yet, it may exacerbate their condition or otherwise harm them even further.
The Big Three
Although a medical misdiagnosis can happen at any time and with any condition, there are three conditions that the researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine have dubbed 'the big three.' These conditions are more likely to be misdiagnosed than any other, and they include:
● Cancer: No matter the type of cancer, this is the condition most likely to be misdiagnosed. Among all cancers, lung cancer is the one most commonly misdiagnosed.
● Vascular events: A vascular event refers to any abnormal condition of the veins and arteries. Of all vascular events, strokes are the most commonly misdiagnosed.
● Infections: When an infection is misdiagnosed, the effects can be fatal as the infection becomes worse. This is particularly true with sepsis, which is the body's extreme response to an infection.
Most diagnostic errors, including the above big three, occur in an outpatient setting or during an emergency situation.
Filing a Medical Misdiagnosis Claim
Just as with any other type of medical malpractice, patients who are harmed due to a misdiagnosis can file a personal injury claim against the doctor or medical facility. These claims are incredibly complex. The law does not hold doctors responsible for all misdiagnosed medical conditions. Doctors must be able to attempt some form of trial and error when diagnosing a condition and so, they are not held liable for all errors.
Due to this, patients must prove that another doctor would not have acted in the same manner. If you can prove that another doctor would have correctly diagnosed your condition so you could receive the proper treatment, you may have a valid claim.
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