Williams, Walsh & O'Connor, LLC

Why are women misdiagnosed more often than men?

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University published data in 2017 showing that one in every 20 Americans will be misdiagnosed with an incorrect medical condition at some point during their life. Another statistic they released that same year showed that a quarter of a million of all Americans each year die from suspected medical malpractice, a cause of death that is only surpassed by heart disease and cancer.

While all types of patients fall victim from time to time to misdiagnosis, if asked, some women would say that their doctors get their diagnosis wrong far more often than they do with men. Science seems to support what would otherwise come off as anecdotal evidence too.

One study published in 2016 showed that women are 50 percent more likely than men to have received an incorrect diagnosis prior to suffering a heart attack. Indicators that a female patient is susceptible to having a stroke are missed 30 percent more often than they are with men too.

Researchers working on this study seemingly found that many common conditions that women suffer from aren't just improperly diagnosed, but that the time it takes for them to receive an accurate one is often delayed. As an example, endometriosis, they found, can take as long as 10 years to be properly diagnosed. With autoimmune diseases, it can take as long as five years for it to be appropriately identified.

Patients who experience delayed diagnosis are often forced to suffer unreasonable amounts of pain as they seek to find a treatment that works for them. Those who receive the wrong diagnosis receive unnecessary treatments that have the potential to reduce their life expectancy.

If you've received either a delayed diagnosis or an altogether incorrect one, then a New Haven attorney can advise you of potential legal avenues that can be pursued in your case.

Source: Glamour Magaine, "Why are so many women being misdiagnosed?," Kelly Mickle, accessed May 04, 2018

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