The research appears to be very simple: when doctors don't listen to their patient, they also misdiagnose symptoms and illnesses. Also, miscommunications to patients can lead to a variety of complications as well: failure to follow directions, medical complications and medication errors.
Medication side effects, pneumonia and high blood pressure are common symptoms that are all too frequently misdiagnosed by doctors. These types of symptoms should be picked up when a patient is visiting his doctor, but close to two-thirds of diagnosis errors occur while someone is actually at the doctor's office.
We recently wrote concerning skepticism about the wide use of electronic records as a part of medical care. The skeptics felt these records were often the blame for certain medical errors. However, other studies have suggested that, if used correctly, these electronic records can reduce certain types of medication and prescription errors.
A new study appears to demonstrate that many medical misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose type mistakes come about because physicians are expected to do too much in the short time that they spend with their patients. Schedules for doctors in Pittsburgh and across the country are becoming increasingly tighter, and the timeframe for communicating with patients have often been shortened.
A study was conducted concerning medical mistakes made by physicians. When examining electronic medical records, one of the greatest surprises for researchers was to find the number of instances involving delayed or missed diagnosis.
A Pennsylvania doctor was recently assessed a civil penalty of $2,000 and ordered to enroll in a remedial education program due to purported problems with the keeping of medical records. The doctor apparently did not note in the records changes in a patient's medical condition, nor did the doctor report the symptoms reported when prescribing a particular patient a controlled substance. It seems the doctor also failed to record details in prescribing the controlled substance.
Errors following surgery are unfortunately common. According to a study, it is estimated that about half of such errors can lead to serious health issues for the patient. And it is also felt that the current safety protocol of most hospitals will not prevent these types of errors from occurring.
Two new studies have found a prevalence of errors occurring where medicines or anesthesia is given before or during surgical procedures. Many of such medication errors have led to fatalities.
In 2011, a Pennsylvania radiologist while examining an X-ray noted a small area of increased density in a patient's chest. Though a follow-up X-ray was recommended, the results of the follow-up were never communicated to the patient until it was too late. By the next year, this patient was suffering from irreversible lung cancer.
We've mentioned several times how communication errors contribute greatly to medication mistakes made in prescribing and administering the drugs. Now it is believed that cell phone communications may contribute to such medication errors as well.