Knoxville Delayed Diagnosis Attorney
A proper and timely diagnosis is essential to receiving adequate medical care. When doctors make a delayed diagnosis, they can permanently injure their patients by depriving them of life-saving treatment before a medical condition becomes too advanced. The Knoxville delayed diagnosis attorneys at Atkins Brezina, PLLC can help you with a claim for compensation if a delayed diagnosis has injured you. Contact us today.
How Delayed Diagnosis Injures a Patient
The length of the delay could be a few hours, or it could be weeks or months. But any delay has the potential to make a medical condition worse. For example:
- Failure to diagnose chest pain can lead to a heart attack, which might have been prevented.
- Failure to diagnose cancer can lead to its spread or growth, requiring additional surgery or possibly causing death.
- Failure to diagnose a severed artery can lead to limb loss or organ failure.
- Failure to diagnose a ruptured disc can cause unnecessary pain and immobility.
Why Diagnosis is So Often Delayed
With all their training and education, doctors should accurately and quickly diagnose medical problems. Unfortunately, many things can lead to a delayed diagnosis:
- Failure to order tests
- Failure to track test results
- Delayed scheduling to meet with a patient
- Miscommunication between medical providers
- Missing paperwork
- Improperly filled out forms
- Lack of patient follow-up
- Refusal to refer patient to specialists
These types of mistakes increase when doctor’s offices are understaffed, overworked, or staffed with incompetent people. Some doctors are struggling with addiction or mental health problems and therefore never realize that their office is making mistakes.
Medical Malpractice and Delayed Diagnosis
It is important to understand that the delayed diagnosis is not the initial medical problem. Instead, patients present to a doctor with certain symptoms, but the doctor doesn’t initially identify the underlying problem. Instead, a doctor might claim that “it’s all in your head” or simply tell you to take a couple aspirin when you get back home. Or the doctor might tell you that they are making a referral or ordering tests, but you never hear from them.
Because diagnosis is delayed, a patient’s medical condition can worsen. For example, someone feeling pain in their abdomen could have cancer. Because testing is delayed, they don’t discover the cancer for six months or more—at which point it is much more advanced.
To make a successful claim, we must show that:
- The doctor failed to follow the correct standard of care.
- This failure caused your injury.
Essentially, we must show that a careful doctor in similar circumstances would have made the diagnosis sooner and that this failure is a proximate cause of your injuries.
Call Our Knoxville Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
Michael Brezina has worked in the medical malpractice field since 2004 and understands how doctors and insurers defend against these cases. He has developed a network of expert witnesses who help him analyze cases and fight for compensation for his clients. To schedule a time to meet, please contact Atkins Brezina, PLLC today. Our firm’s consultations are free.