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Guarding against missed or incorrect diagnoses

Problems with diagnoses are known to be among some of the most common in the realm of medical malpractice cases for Pennsylvania patients. Whether an incorrect diagnosis or a failure to diagnose a problem altogether, the risk of such medical errors can be great. Serious injury and even death can result from such actions, or lack thereof, leaving victims and family members grieving and searching for answers.

According to the British Journal of Medicine, there are an estimated 12 million problems associated with medical diagnoses every year. With this knowledge in hand, patients are urged to take greater action in their healthcare to prevent their own potential victimhood. Some of the ways that people can do this include making notes before a doctor’s visit. Writing down all symptoms and potentially related information along with a list of questions can ensure that no detail is forgotten while in the doctor’s office.

Additionally, it is recommended that patients keep their own journal relating to their medical history and doctor’s visits. This includes the list of questions and a synopsis of each office visit after it has happened. Garnering second opinions can also help to ward off a worsened condition that is not promptly identified by an initial doctor. Using a family physician as the general contractor for healthcare is one of the smartest things people can do. This allows one person to have oversight on all things and may prevent delayed treatment and other problems.

The rate of medical errors is alarming to most patients. Working with an attorney when a problem is suspected can be of great help to victims and family members.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “How patients with an inconclusive diagnosis should proceed,” Lisa Zamosky, May 18, 2014

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