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Cancer can go undiagnosed or misdiagnosed, risking patient health

On Behalf of | May 4, 2021 | Medical Malpractice

By and large, doctors know what they are doing. They undergo rigorous education and training methods to help them avoid making dangerous mistakes. However, such errors continue to happen, threatening the health and lives of many North Haven, Connecticut residents.

Cancer, as you know, is an insidious condition that continues to harm and kill American citizens. Getting an early cancer diagnosis plays a huge role in the patient’s ability to overcome this illness. Unfortunately, many cancers go undetected altogether or result in a misdiagnosis. What this means is patients go untreated for too long or receive the wrong treatment.

What cancers are often misdiagnosed?

Some cancers are more vulnerable to misdiagnosis than other cancers because they may mimic unrelated conditions. Some of these include:

  • Breast cancer. This condition often mimics breast inflammation, non-cancerous cysts or fibrocystic breast disease. About one in eight women suffer invasive breast cancer. Early diagnosis and treatment are vital to surviving this cancer.
  • Lung cancer. Most lung cancer patients experience coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath, which may lead to a misdiagnosis. This type of cancer can mimic conditions such as tuberculosis, pneumonia and other respiratory ailments.
  • Colorectal cancer. This cancer can mimic ulcerative colitis, inflammatory bowel disease and even hemorrhoids. As such, it often goes misdiagnosed until patients become extremely ill.
  • Pancreatic cancer. Like colorectal cancer, pancreatic cancer can mimic inflammatory bowel disease. Patients also exhibit symptoms like those that come with gallstones or pancreatitis. Since diabetes is a symptom of pancreatic cancer, some patients receive a diabetes diagnosis alone, leaving their cancer unaddressed.

Your doctor must treat you without causing additional harm. Unfortunately, a preventable cancer misdiagnosis does cause harm. Filing a medical malpractice claim can help you acquire financial compensation for the harm you have suffered. In turn, this money can improve your treatment options and your quality of life as you continue battling your condition.