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How common are diagnostic errors?

On Behalf of | Jan 20, 2016 | Medical Malpractice |

When we are sick or injured, we assume that going to the doctor will result in a medical diagnosis and effective treatment for that condition. However, this doesn’t always happen. In fact, many people end up in worse condition because of a misdiagnosis.

Misdiagnosis is a pervasive problem in the U.S. In an article on our website titled, “Study: 5 percent of Americans misdiagnosed each year,” we examined some of the reasons why the rate of misdiagnosis has reached such troubling levels. In this blog post, we will look at some of the most commonly misdiagnosed conditions in an effort to help readers understand what to beware of when it comes to certain conditions and misdiagnoses.

According to this article, there are 10 conditions that are most commonly misdiagnosed initially. These conditions include:

  1. Cancer
  2. Heart attacks
  3. Depression
  4. Celiac disease
  5. Stroke
  6. Lyme disease
  7. Fibromyalgia
  8. Thyroid conditions
  9. Aortic dissection
  10. Pulmonary embolism

These conditions can present diagnostic challenges in many different ways, from testing limitations to vague symptoms. However, as we discussed in that article on our website, misdiagnoses can also occur because of failure on the part of doctors and nurses.

Being misdiagnosed can have devastating consequences. Original symptoms can persist or get worse when the wrong course of treatment is prescribed and new symptoms and conditions can arise, further complicating matters.

If you have suffered damages as a result of a misdiagnosis stemming from negligent or intentionally harmful practices, it can be crucial that you discuss your legal options with an attorney and examine whether a legal claim can and should be filed. A successful medical malpractice claim can help victims and their families collect compensation that can be crucial in helping them cope with the effects of the misdiagnosis and begin to rebuild their lives.


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