Receiving a cancer diagnosis can be one of the most devastating things a patient can experience. But being put through an extensive period of unnecessary treatment and anguish, only to find out that you were misdiagnosed, can be equally traumatic for patients and their families.
That’s exactly what happened to a doctor, who wrote about his experience in Op-Med. After receiving a diagnosis for lung cancer, he spent thousands of dollars on treatment. Additionally, his family suffered mental and emotional distress, only to find out that he had a lung infection.
Cancer misdiagnoses are often attributed to:
- Failure to order initial or follow-up tests
- Incorrectly reading test results
- Losing or accidentally switching test results
- Making errors in X-ray or imaging results
- Not referring patients to specialists
Is it lung cancer or something else?
In the case of the doctor who was misdiagnosed, a lung infection such as pneumonia can share many of the same symptoms as lung cancer. These include:
- Coughing (even coughing up blood)
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
However, there are some symptoms of lung cancer and pneumonia that don’t overlap. A patient with pneumonia may experience a fever and chills, while a patient with lung cancer may experience rapid weight loss.
Lung cancer is usually caused by:
- Smoking tobacco (as well as secondhand smoke)
- Exposure to air pollution
- Exposure to hazardous substances such as asbestos
Pneumonia is attributed to viruses, bacterial infections, fungi, and parasites.
Holding negligent doctors accountable
Anytime a patient is diagnosed with cancer, it should never be set in stone until receiving a second opinion. Unfortunately, many doctors or medical professionals fail to take one of the crucial steps needed to determine a patient’s illness.
When this happens, and a patient’s health is compromised, responsible parties should be held accountable. Patients and their families should be able to trust that they will receive quality and accurate care when being treated for an illness. When it comes to someone’s life, there is no room for error.
If you have received a cancer misdiagnosis, you may be able to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit. That’s why you need an experienced legal team in your corner who will work tirelessly to uncover evidence of wrongdoing.
We have previously helped medical malpractice victims maximize their compensation and have the case results to prove it.
Contact us today to learn how we can help.