Did your misdiagnosis lead to unnecessary injury or distress?
It’s natural to trust your GP to make a sound diagnosis. They’re generally the first port of call for those who are feeling unwell.
Occasionally, though, doctors incorrectly diagnose a condition, leading to further injury, psychological distress, or both.
If you’ve suffered as a result of a misdiagnosis, whether you were seen by your GP, a private doctor, an NHS doctor, physiotherapist or other healthcare professional, you might be entitled to seek compensation by making a misdiagnosis compensation claim. You can call us today on 0800 376 0150, for free, to speak about your claim.
What counts as a 'misdiagnosis'?
You might be unsure about whether your experience would count as a ‘misdiagnosis’. If you’ve gone through any of the following, it’s likely that you’ve suffered as a result of misdiagnosis:
- Your doctor failed to diagnose your condition at all, leading to a deterioration in your health or mental wellbeing
- Your doctor gave you incorrect or unsuitable medication or treatment based on their incorrect diagnosis, and your health has been negatively affected as a result
- Your doctor delayed correctly diagnosing your condition, which became worse as a result of the delay. Some examples of this are listed below
Examples of delayed diagnosis
Failing to diagnose an injury or illness at the first opportunity can lead to further complications. Below are some conditions that can lead to serious complications if they aren’t diagnosed at the earliest opportunity.
Cauda Equina syndrome
This condition requires urgent medical attention to stop a slipped disc pressing on the nerves. Signs of its onset include a loss of sensation in the genital area, incontinence and urinary retention. If you reported symptoms such as these to a medical professional and they failed to act, you might be able to make a misdiagnosis claim.
Bacterial meningitis is a life-threatening condition and must be treated as a medical emergency. Symptoms are known to include a combination of fever, a non-blanching rash, vomiting, neck pain, drowsiness and convulsions. If a medical professional missed your meningitis symptoms or those of your child, you should contact us about whether you can claim for misdiagnosis.
Appendicitis needs to be treated urgently with surgery to remove the appendix. If your appendix bursts (ruptures), it can result in infection or the development of abscesses or blood poisoning, any of which can be life-threatening. If you reported pain in your lower right abdomen, along with other symptoms such as a high temperature, vomiting and diarrhoea, but your GP or A&E failed to act quickly, you may be eligible to make a misdiagnosis claim.
A subarachnoid haemorrhage is a bleed on the brain. Typical symptoms include a stiff neck, vomiting, sensitivity to light (photophobia) and vision problems. Often, a patient’s symptoms will be mistakenly attributed to a migraine or a headache, but it is the combination of symptoms that should alert a medical professional to the fact that a subarachnoid haemorrhage needs to be diagnosed or excluded.
An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilised egg implants itself outside of the womb in one of the fallopian tubes. As the embryo grows, the tube stretches and, if the pregnancy continues, the tube can rupture. This causes pain and bleeding which requires medical attention. Many claims for the delay in diagnosis of ectopic pregnancies are made for the pain and suffering caused by the delay in diagnosis, rather than from the damage to the fallopian tube itself. If you suffered as a result of a delay in the diagnosis of your ectopic pregnancy, you might have a claim for misdiagnosis.
Delayed cancer diagnosis
A delayed cancer diagnosis may have seriously affected your ability to fight the condition. Meanwhile, a timely diagnosis, followed by early treatment, could have dramatically increased your prospects of beating cancer and going into remission. Delays in cancer diagnosis can be caused by errors such as:
- Failure to request tests or examinations
- Misinterpreted or misread scans and X-rays
- Blood or tissue samples incorrectly interpreted
Certain symptoms should alert medical professionals to the fact that a patient should be checked for cancer. For example:
- An inability to swallow (dysphagia) should result in an urgent referral to exclude oesophageal cancer
- Blood in the urine should result in an immediate referral to exclude bladder and kidney (renal) cancer
- Rectal bleeding should, in certain circumstances, result in an immediate referral to exclude bowel cancer
- Headaches with other visual symptoms should lead to a consideration of a brain pathology
- Breast lumps require appropriate analysis and investigation
Sadly, delays in cancer diagnosis and treatment can occur, even when you have been referred appropriately. Tissue samples can be lost or misreported and follow-up treatment can be missed due to administrative errors.
If you think your cancer could have been diagnosed more quickly, get in touch on 0800 376 0150.
We’ll talk through the background to your situation with you and help you find out if you can claim compensation for a delayed cancer diagnosis.
Not sure if you have a claim?
For over 20 years, we’ve helped people who have suffered medical negligence claim compensation after they’ve suffered injuries that could have been avoided with a correct diagnosis. Our friendly advisors are waiting for your free and confidential call.