Medical misdiagnosis can have far reaching and very serious implications for patients and their families. An illness or condition may be missed completely and the benefits of early treatment can be lost if the problem remains undiagnosed or is misdiagnosed.
In some cases, permanent damage can be caused and in serious conditions a misdiagnosis could prove fatal. If you believe you have suffered injury, loss and damage as a result of a misdiagnosis then you may be entitled to compensation.
Types of Claim
Misdiagnosis claims are typically divided into 2 types of claim – those arising from a misdiagnosis and those arising from a failure to diagnose a condition. The first concerns an incorrect diagnosis such as a fracture diagnosed as a sprain for instance. The second concerns a condition which is undiagnosed, such as where a patient attends a G.P. with health problems over a period of time and the G.P. fails to diagnose a serious condition.
Examples of negligent misdiagnosis include:
- Delayed cancer diagnosis or misdiagnosis
- Undiagnosed fractures
- Undiagnosed meningitis
- Misdiagnosis leading to unnecessary surgery
- Misdiagnosis leading to unnecessary treatment and medication
- Undiagnosed infections
- Undiagnosed appendicitis
Making a Claim*
To pursue a misdiagnosis claim, the misdiagnosis or failed diagnosis must have caused you further injury, loss and damage. If the illness or condition is treated later and the delay in treatment due to the misdiagnosis had no real adverse effect, then there is no claim in negligence. It will be necessary before proceeding to take up a copy of your medical records and engage an independent medical expert to furnish an opinion on the misdiagnosis. The alleged negligent medical professional will then need to be put on notice of the intention to pursue a claim and legal proceedings drafted setting out the basis of the claim. The claim must be supported by expert medical opinion.
What to Do
The first step is to contact us for a consultation without delay. We have particular expertise in medical negligence claims and will be happy to explain the process to you and offer clear and sound advice relevant to your individual circumstances. We will guide you through the process treating you and your case with confidentiality, sensitivity and respect. Strict time limits apply in making a claim so it is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible.
If you wish to discuss a potential claim or would like advice on any matter, please contact us for a consultation.