Can You Sue a Doctor for Failing to Diagnose Your Cancer?
We go to the doctor so he can make us feel better. Whether we’re sick or injured, we count on nurses and doctors to help us. We expect that he’s educated and trained properly. We have no reason to think that they’re going to do something to make us worse.
When it comes to certain diseases such as cancer, it’s not always so easy to diagnose. You may know something’s wrong but have no idea what it is. With cancer, you could wake up one morning with a headache and learn the next day that you have brain cancer. Or, you may think you have a urinary tract infection and find out it’s actually bladder cancer.
Cancer is not something you can self-diagnose. You can’t see inside your body. All you can do is go to a doctor and ask him to do the necessary tests to find out what’s wrong with you. You trust that he knows what he’s doing. Little did you know, doctors make mistakes too.
If you or your loved one have been misdiagnosed by your doctor, you may need to call a personal injury attorney in Atlanta, Georgia.
Examples of Failure to Diagnose Cases
When people hear the words medical malpractice, they tend to think of cases where a surgeon killed a patient. They don’t really think about the types of cases that happen every day, and they don’t realize how many people are misdiagnosed every year. They don’t think about the cases where a patient is diagnosed with cancer way too late.
For the most part, if you have cancer and are diagnosed early, you can be treated for the disease. You may not beat it forever, but you can certainly go into remission. You may be able to live a long and healthy life with certain types of cancers. However, it needs to be detected and diagnosed early for this to happen.
When a doctor fails to diagnose your cancer for weeks or even just weeks, your prognosis can change. For certain types of cancer, such as liver or pancreatic cancer, a few weeks can make a lot of difference. It can mean the difference between having treatment options and not having treatment options.
Let’s look at an example. A patient is having trouble breathing and seems to have a cough that hasn’t gone away for months. He goes to see his doctor. His doctor prescribes him an antibiotic and cough syrup. He tells the patient to come back in a few weeks if he still feels sick.
Had the doctor done a simple chest x-ray, he would have seen a mass in the patient’s right lung. He would have been able to schedule emergency surgery. He also could have let the patient know what was going on so he could prepare himself and his family for the illness.
By not doing the x-ray or follow-up tests, the doctor reduced your chances of survival by as much as 70%. You’re angry, hurt and scared. And you have a right to be.
What Kind of Damages Will Your Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Demand?
If your doctor fails to diagnose your cancer, you may have a claim for medical malpractice. Your Atlanta personal injury lawyer will file a claim against the doctor’s insurance. If they refuse to pay, he’ll have no choice but to file a lawsuit on your behalf.
In your lawsuit, your personal injury attorney will demand the following:
- Medical bills – The doctor can be held responsible for any additional medical costs associated with your misdiagnosis.
- Lost Future Earnings – If you become unable to work due to your late diagnosis, you may be entitled to lost future earnings.
- Pain and Suffering – Of course, in a case like this, you may be entitled to pain and suffering.
Your personal injury lawyer in Atlanta will fight to get you as much compensation as possible.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia
If your doctor fails to diagnose a major illness, you need to call a personal injury lawyer in Atlanta. Don’t wait too long to do this. You need to focus on getting better. The last thing you want to do is deal with lawyers and insurance companies.
Call today and schedule your free initial consultation. You can sit down with an experienced lawyer and let him review your case. He can let you know what it may be worth. He can also let you know if you have a valid claim.
The consultation is absolutely free and you pay nothing until you settle your case.