Failure to Diagnose Cancer

By Lynn Harris on July 01, 2019

Doctors with a medical chartCancer is an aggressive disease that tends to spread quickly. Unfortunately, cancer can also be difficult to treat, and the likelihood of successful treatment goes down the further the condition has progressed. This makes early diagnosis and treatment important. The failure to diagnose cancer, or a delayed diagnosis, can result in catastrophic injuries or death.

If failure to diagnose cancer is the result of negligence or substandard medical care, the patient may have a right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Medical malpractice holds medical professionals liable when they deliver care that falls short of the expected standard. Attorney Lynn Harris can assist medical malpractice victims in the Provo and Salt Lake City, UT, area in getting the compensation they are due from negligent medical professionals.

Medical Malpractice and Failure to Diagnose

Medical malpractice describes an instance in which a hospital, doctor, or other medical professional commits a negligent act that results in injury to the patient. One common form of medical malpractice is failure to diagnose.

To prove medical negligence for our Salt Lake City clients, attorney Lynn Harris must show the court three things:

  1. The medical standard of care was not met: If the patient could have gotten better care (or an accurate diagnosis) from a similarly trained doctor presented with the same circumstances, than the standard of care was not met.
  2. Negligence caused injury to the patient: Even if negligence is proven, there is no case for medical malpractice if the patient doesn’t suffer injuries. In terms of misdiagnosis, it needs to be shown that the misdiagnosis led to injuries that could have been avoided with proper diagnosis and treatment.
  3. Injuries resulted in damages: The damages sustained as a result of medical malpractice must be significant enough to warrant a lawsuit. Examples of damages include pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages.

Damages in Failed Diagnosis Cases

Cancer often spreads quickly. The longer that a patient goes without a diagnosis, the more likely it is that the condition will worsen. As a result, patients may need to undergo more aggressive treatment to treat the condition.

A failure to diagnose cancer can lead to:

  • The need for more intense chemotherapy treatments
  • Invasive surgery to remove tumors
  • Aggressive medical procedures
  • Increased pain and discomfort
  • Shorter life expectancy

Who Is Liable?

There are many medical professionals who may be responsible for failing to diagnose cancer. For instance, liability may fall on a doctor who neglected to order appropriate diagnostic testing, a technician who improperly administered a test, or a radiologist who misread a slide.

Attorney Lynn Harris will closely examine the details of each case to determine who should be held accountable for the failure to diagnose cancer. In some cases, multiple medical professionals, or an entire hospital, can be held accountable for the damages sustained by our Salt Lake City clients.

Contact Us

If you believe that you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, contact us at your earliest convenience to learn more about your legal options. You can also schedule a consultation to discuss your situation with attorney Lynn Harris by calling (801) 521-3200 or 801) 375-9801.

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