A man who works in Pennsylvania suffers from Ataxia, and he is co-chairman of a support group for individuals afflicted with this syndrome. Unfortunately, Ataxia is not always easy to diagnose, and doctors often are guilty of misdiagnosis by telling such patients that they have multiple sclerosis or Parkinson's disease instead.
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.
Anyone entering a Pittsburgh health clinic would cringe if they were given a fatal diagnosis. It's probably next to impossible to consider what goes on in a patient's mind during such an occurrence.
Pennsylvanians suffering from unrelenting symptoms may want to seek additional medical advice to ensure their symptoms are not misdiagnosed. In particular, younger patients should be aware of the dangers of misdiagnosed cancer. Doctors often only expect to find certain cancers, like colorectal cancer, in patients over 50.
Medical staff needs to be responsive to the individual needs of their patients. A failure to abide by protocol or review a patient's medical history can often lead to devastating results.
We can likely expect similar awards in Pennsylvania to what was delivered by a jury in the District of Columbia. There, a jury awarded $5 million to the family of a man that died after a doctor failed to diagnose this individual's cancer.
In what is thought to be one of the largest medical malpractice awards in Pennsylvania history, a jury recently awarded $6.4 million to the five children of a man whose heart condition was misdiagnosed as pneumonia. As a result of the failure to undiagnosed heart condition, the man was discharged and later died after suffering a massive heart attack.
In the first post of this two-part series, we shared the results of a study that was recently published about how to spot doctors that could be putting your health at risk. In the first post we covered the dangers of a doctor who is too ready to prescribe medications and ones that are running on a lack of sleep. Both of these behaviors can lead to misdiagnosis,medication errors and other types of malpractice.
Why do we go to the doctor when something does not feel right? We go because our health is one of the most important things in our lives and yet treatment of our ailments is one of the least understood things in our lives. Most individuals in Pennsylvania and across the nation put blind faith in their doctor's abilities. They received years of intense training so they should know what they are doing right?
A Pennsylvania doctor expressed concerns about how Lyme disease is not always being identified properly. This is of particular concern during the summer months, and during a year when the rate of Lyme disease is expected to be quite high. However, since Lyme disease is an extremely common disease with potentially serious consequences, it is extremely important that it is identified early on rather than misidentified due to a misdiagnosis.