The Consequences of a Missed Cancer Diagnosis

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), this year, 1,958,310 new cancer cases and 609,820 cancer deaths are projected to occur in the United States. Early diagnosis and treatment are some of the most important factors for cancer recovery and survival. Therefore, when a doctor or other medical professional fails to detect the disease, it can be detrimental to a patient’s treatment and chances of survival. Here is more on the consequences of a missed cancer diagnosis.

Missed Cancer Diagnosis

Patients rely on doctors and other medical professionals to accurately detect and diagnose serious medical conditions, especially when the condition is cancer. When a patient is diagnosed with cancer, treatment should begin immediately. The longer the disease goes untreated, the more it can spread and damage the body. Unfortunately, sometimes physicians and others misdiagnose or miss a patient’s cancer symptoms.

A patient may suffer a missed cancer diagnosis for many reasons, such as when a doctor or other provider:

  • Fails to order necessary testing.
  • Misdiagnoses the patient’s condition
  • Misreads test results or scans
  • Does not administer tests properly
  • Ignores patient complaints
  • Orders the wrong tests
  • Mishandles and contaminates samples

Several Medical Professionals Can Commit Medical Malpractice

A patient’s medical care can involve various professionals, such as doctors, radiologists, interns, nurses, and medical technicians. Unfortunately, any of these individuals could make a mistake that leads to a missed cancer diagnosis. When those responsible for a patient’s care commit negligence leading to a missed cancer diagnosis, the patient’s treatment and care can be irreparably harmed.

Common Types of Missed Cancer Diagnoses

There are several types of cancer. Some forms more commonly missed by doctors and medical care professionals include:

  • Lung Cancer
  • Colon Cancer
  • Skin Cancer
  • Oral Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Breast Cancer

These or other missed cancer diagnoses can have severe consequences for patients and their loved ones. If you or a loved one have been harmed by a delayed or missed cancer diagnosis, you should consult with one of the experienced medical malpractice attorneys of Bonina & Bonina, P.C. Contact the Med Law team at 1-888-MEDLAW1 or contact us online today to set an appointment.

The Loss of Chance Doctrine

Cancer patient survival often depends on several factors, such as whether the disease has metastasized, the stage at the time of diagnosis, the form of cancer, and when they receive medical intervention and treatment. When a patient is accurately and promptly diagnosed with cancer, they have a greater chance of having additional weeks, months, or years of life. Conversely, a missed or delayed cancer diagnosis can reduce a patient’s chances of survival. In New York, when a doctor or other medical provider fails to diagnose a patient’s cancer, the patient or their loved ones may be able to pursue damages through the loss of chance doctrine.

Loss of chance doctrine is a theory of recovery that applies when a medical provider’s malpractice harms a victim by diminishing their chances of survival and recovery. An injured party does not have to show that the provider’s conduct worsened their condition. Further, there is no specific period of delay. Even a brief wait may be actionable when cancer or another serious illness goes undetected.

In New York, loss of chance doctrine cases involving cancer, diagnostic, and treatment delays of just a few weeks could result in a medical professional being held liable for a patient’s diminished loss of chance of recovery. Additionally, a plaintiff may have a cause of action if their cancer progresses from one stage to another during the delayed diagnosis period. They may also be able to sue on the basis that they required more invasive treatment because they were not timely diagnosed.

Consequences of a Missed Cancer Diagnosis

When someone has cancer, a delay of even a few months can result in a diminished chance of recovery. If you or a loved one has suffered a missed or delayed cancer diagnosis, you may be able to seek compensation through the loss of chance doctrine. However, these cases are complicated and require specific evidence. Therefore, you will want to work with an experienced New York medical malpractice attorney who can assist you with assessing and presenting your loss of chance case.

Contact an Experienced Missed Cancer Diagnosis Attorney

At Bonina & Bonina, P.C., we believe that every person with cancer deserves a full opportunity for early detection, early treatment, and complete cure. If you or a loved one has been injured due to a delayed or missed cancer diagnosis and want the facts of that medical care investigated, you should contact the Med Law team at 1-888-MEDLAW1 or contact us online to set an appointment—Se Habla Espanol. Home and hospital visits are available.