With July being Medical Malpractice Awareness Month nationwide, including in Illinois, new research that shows physicians frequently fail to notice early indications of heart disease might be worth discussing. A joint study by a medical malpractice company and a firm that specializes in research and analysis recently published evidence that diagnosis errors by general practitioners in outpatient facilities are frequent occurrences. The study was based on over 250 cases of medical malpractice in which doctors failed to notice signs of cardiovascular diseases that had significant chances of ultimately leading to conditions that are more serious.
Being given a diagnosis of breast cancer would be traumatic for an Illinois resident to experience. Surgery to remove the breast is often a step in the treatment process for the disease. Recovery from the surgery would understandably bring both physical and emotional struggles. However, discovering that the surgery was unnecessary would be devastating for a person to hear. A recent situation where the failure to diagnose a condition properly has led to a malpractice suit against a hospital in another state.
The birth of a child is miraculous moment for Illinois families and others around the nation. Many tests are conducted shortly after the birth to evaluate a newborn's condition. Examinations and additional tests are also common throughout a child's life. Unfortunately, a failure to diagnose an issue in a child can result in delays and complications. A family in another state filed a medical malpractice lawsuit after experiencing this devastation.
Hospitals in Illinois and throughout the country routinely make errors in their care of patients. In most situations, these errors are reparable and patients recover and may even be unaware something amiss occurred. However, some errors by medical providers can prove fatal. The survivors of a man who passed away last year have recently sued a hospital, other medical groups and physicians in another state for failure to diagnose his condition.
Illinois residents seek the services of physicians every day when various symptoms arise. Doctors routinely diagnose medical conditions and plan treatments accordingly. Patients accept the diagnoses and treatments because of the physicians' extensive training and expertise. However, a misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose a specific condition can lead to catastrophic results.
The Mayo Clinic recently published results of an investigation of patients referred to its General Internal Medicine Division for second opinions. Researchers found that 21% of the patients in the study went home with a completely different diagnosis than the one they had from their referring provider. Sixty-seven percent left with a modified diagnosis and only 12% of patients' diagnoses remained unchanged after their visit.
Many Illinois residents look to their doctors for answers regarding unexplained symptoms. In some cases, a doctor may dismiss a patient's complaints and make a quick diagnosis based on a cursory examination. A patient may challenge that diagnosis when he or she strongly believes there is something else causing the problem. Unfortunately, a young woman in another state was recently correct in her assumption that she had a more serious complication. The doctor's failure to diagnose her condition led to tragic results.
The loss of a loved one in Illinois or elsewhere in the country is a tragedy to the surviving family members. More grief can occur when it is determined that negligence played a part in the death. A woman in another state accuses a doctor and the hospital system with which he is associated with a failure to diagnose her husband correctly, causing his death.
Hospital errors often lead to devastating results for families in Illinois and across the country. A complaint has recently been filed against a hospital in another state by a woman who claims her father died after medical malpractice. The woman alleges that misdiagnoses of her father's condition as well as a delay in his treatment were the cause of his death in 2005. She is also seeking damages for the mental anguish she experienced as well as for her father's suffering.
A parent's worst nightmare is watching a child grow sicker and sicker. Parents in Illinois may try home remedies or over-the-counter medication at first. When the symptoms do not improve, a visit to the doctor may be warranted. If the condition becomes worse, the parents may feel a trip to the emergency room is the next step. After taking these steps, a doctor's failure to diagnose the problem may be frustrating and terrifying.