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Misdiagnoses of Lyme disease causes more harm

Diagnosis errors can cause a number of patients more injuries since their actual conditions are not being treated. Misdiagnoses of chronic Lyme disease in Illinois could result in delays in real diagnosis and appropriate treatment for conditions. There has been a case in which misdiagnosis of Lyme disease caused more harm to the patient.

Reportedly, chronic Lyme disease has been a loosely given diagnosis even when patients have no real evidence of having the disease. Some of the clinical symptoms of Lyme disease include facial palsy and erythema. A man was experiencing memory loss and constant pain along with paresthesia in both of his hands. He was given treatment for Lyme disease, but it was unsuccessful and he continued to get worse. Eventually, he developed syncope, which is a visual field deficit.

It didn't end there, however; a doctor discovered that he has a pituitary tumor and an elevated insulin-like growth. A procedure was performed, but only a part of his tumor could be removed. He then ended up with cardiomyopathy and joint pain. In addition, he now has permanent facial changes and obstructive sleep apnea.

There was no real evidence that the man ever had Lyme disease in the first place. This is an example of how misdiagnoses can cause patients to be delayed treatment that they really need. Furthermore, the longer patients go without the proper treatment, the more likely they are to suffer from even more life-altering conditions. Illinois patients who have been misdiagnosed may have legal remedies to file medical malpractice claims against the responsible physician and/or medical facility for damages.

Source: medscape.com, "Lyme Misdiagnosis Can Divert Patients From Correct Treatment", Larry Hand, Nov. 4, 2014

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