Valenzuela Law Firm, PA | Trial Attorney
Attorney Henry E. Valenzuela

What happens when a doctor fails to diagnose cancer?

On Behalf of | May 2, 2022 | Medical Malpractice

You go to the doctor to get answers when you do not feel well. What happens if the answer does not end up diagnosing the proper condition? If the underlying problem is cancer, it may result in a catastrophic outcome.

Cancer remains a mystery to the medical community. While doctors can link certain cancers to predisposition or lifestyle choices, the disease still may defy all predictions and appear in even the healthiest individual. Discover some of the main reasons cancer may elude doctors.

Do you have the risk factors?

Many elements may lead to a doctor believing you do not have cancer. Certain cancers appear along with risk factors. For instance, if you have problems breathing and have not smoked, a doctor may not believe lung cancer is possible. However, some people who have never smoked can develop lung cancer, and a delayed diagnosis for this type of cancer may prove especially detrimental.

Did the doctor read the results wrong?

Blood work may start to lead doctors towards a particular diagnosis. In the case of cancer, this alone is not enough to reach a conclusion. Body scans of specific areas may reveal clusters of cells or masses that doctors may want to pursue further. Biopsies or concentrated studies may help providers to render a diagnosis of cancer or not. In some cases of a missed cancer diagnosis, either a radiologist reads test results improperly, leading to a halt in the biopsy process. A delay like this allows the cells time to spread.

The misdiagnosis of cancer may leave you with a far more invasive and widespread version of the disease. Continue to advocate for your health should your provider not provide a reasonable diagnosis.

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