Often, when you aren’t feeling well, you may wait for the illness to resolve itself before seeing a doctor. And, in many cases, that’s what happens. If the problem persists, off you go to see a doctor.
Determining the Problem is the Problem
You go to your doctor with the goal of feeling better. The first step toward getting well is to determine what’s wrong. Sounds pretty straightforward, right? After all, this is what doctors do every day.
You trust your doctor to use his or her education and training to discover what’s wrong, and to recommend the best course of treatment. However, even the most skilled physician may miss certain details. That can mean a delay in proper treatment at best, and further complications to your health at worst.
How a Misdiagnosis Can Harm You
Some diseases and conditions are harder to diagnose than others are. However, if a medical practitioner makes a mistake and offers you the incorrect diagnosis, you can find yourself getting worse instead of better. Worse, you could be at risk of harm from dangerous side effects of a drug you didn’t need.
Misdiagnosis of an illness, condition or injury can lead to harm from:
- Delay in treatment
- Incorrect treatment
- Unnecessary drug side effects
- Prolonged pain
- Missed work
Misdiagnosis is a Medical Mistake
A doctor’s inability to diagnose an illness or condition that another practitioner should reasonably be able to diagnose is negligence. It’s a medical mistake, and one that can leave you in worse shape than you might have been if you hadn’t sought medical help at all. This is a form of medical malpractice, and legal help may be available to you.
If you think you’ve been harmed by a misdiagnosis, or have other medical malpractice questions, contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney to help determine if taking legal action is a good choice for you.