Misdiagnosed Conditions Can Cause Unnecessary Pain And Suffering


Plantar fasciitis is a condition from which sufferers experience pain in the heel/arch of the foot/feet.  It occurs when the plantar fascia (a ligament in the foot) becomes strained, irritated, weakens, or becomes swollen.  This condition may become extremely painful and causes the most discomfort when one stands or walks.

There are many different causes of plantar fasciitis, such as standing/walking for prolonged periods, having high arches or flat feet, wearing inadequate footwear, and obesity.  Experienced medical malpractice attorneys, however, know that this condition is commonly over diagnosed and the patient actually suffers from a different condition.

Conditions that can mistakenly be diagnosed as plantar fasciitis are:

  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fascial rupture
  • Sciatica
  • Entrapment of the lateral plantar nerve
  • Calcaneal stress fracture
  • Systemic disorders
  • Calcaneal apophysitis

In fact, it may be the more prudent course for a physician or podiatrist to consider these conditions prior to diagnosing a patient with plantar fasciitis.  So, what rights do you have if your pain continued because you were misdiagnosed and because your true condition went undiagnosed?

You must first understand your basic right when a doctor-patient relationship is created; the treating medical professional must provide his/her services according to the standards of the profession in which he practices and within the community in which he practices so that unnecessary harm is not experienced by the patient.  If another doctor in the same field and within the same community would not have done what your doctor did, then your doctor has breached his duty to you.

Having breached his duty, the breach must have been the proximate cause of your injuries, instead of some other unrelated factor.  Proximate cause means that the injury was the natural, direct, and uninterrupted consequence of the doctor’s negligent actions.

Additionally, in order for there to be a recovery in a court of law, the plaintiff must have experienced some sort of damages.  Damages fall into two different categories; compensatory and punitive.  Punitive damages are rarely awarded, so let’s dispense with those quickly.  Punitive damages are awarded to a plaintiff as to punish the defendant for reckless, wanton, and intentional actions.  These actions are rare and civil courts tend to let criminal courts dispense punishments.

Compensatory damages are the natural remedy used by civil courts.  This type of damages seeks to “right the wrong”.  The patient’s medical costs, lost income, lost earning capacity, rehabilitation costs, vocational training costs, pain and suffering all fall within this category.  These costs will be calculated and presented to a jury so that a fair and just award is given to the plaintiff.

But what do you think?  I would love to hear from you!  Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at jfisher@fishermalpracticelaw.com.  You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com.