Undiagnosed Illness And Misdiagnosed Ailments As Forms Of Medical Malpractice


Every minute of treatment lost means more pain, suffering, possibly shortens one’s life span, and reduces the chances of survival from serious conditions.  Experienced medical malpractice attorneys have seen firsthand what happens when lung cancer was diagnosed as pneumonia, or when a doctor failed to diagnose a concussion.

The medical profession propounds the procedures and protocols to be used by doctors who diagnose patients’ injuries and illnesses.  Sometimes, it is as easy as following pre-charted guidelines.  Medical professionals charged with diagnosing patients have been trained in the standard of care that is to be provided to patients.  Professionals within the same community and within the same position or specialty must treat patients with the care as would any other reasonable and diligent practitioner.

The following is a short list commonly misdiagnosed illnesses:

  • Headaches
  • Cancer
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Cancer
  • Anxiety
  • Diabetes
  • Asthma
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Lupus
  • Fatigue

Once there exists a doctor-patient relationship, patients must be timely and properly diagnosed.  Their duty as medical professionals requires it.  Any injury that results from the misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose is recoverable by the patient in a civil action.

Damages are a reflection of a patient’s physical and emotional harm in monetary terms.  The types of damages that exist are compensatory damages and punitive damages.  Money lost in payment for treatment that would not have been required if the medical professional had not committed negligence is recoverable.  The wages that you have lost because of work lost by having to cure a mistake made by a medical professional are compensable.  Your lost ability to earn future income because of the medical negligence is a loss considered by a jury.  Any reduction in your chances of survival, life span, and any death caused by a misdiagnosis is a compensable injury.

Juries charged with deliberating upon medical malpractice liability will also be allowed to consider punitive damages.  While compensatory damages compensate plaintiffs for their injuries, punitive damages punish the wrongdoer.  Punitive damages send a message to a defendant and even an entire profession that their behavior is extreme and egregious.

Punitive damages are rarely awarded, but experienced medical malpractice attorneys know when they are an appropriate award.  They are awarded to make an example.  Moreover, unlike other states, New York has no cap on the amount of punitive damages that juries can award.  Your attorney will weigh the precise factors of your case, analyze other punitive awards granted by juries, and determine if your case is appropriate for such damages.

Given the extreme consequences of misdiagnosis and the failure to timely diagnose, you deserve adequate compensation.

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.