Legal Representation After Failure to Diagnose Breast Cancer
Breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer after skin cancer. According to BreastCancer.org, one out of every eight women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime. This includes over 230,000 women who will be diagnosed this year.
The best way to successfully fight breast cancer is to receive an early and accurate diagnosis. Early detection allows the doctor and patient to develop an effective and less-invasive treatment plan. As the cancer grows and spreads, it becomes more difficult to treat and the chance for survival diminishes. When there is a failure to diagnose breast cancer, it can have a significant impact on the treatment available and the prognosis of the patient. In such cases, it is important that patients and their families understand their legal rights and options.
Breast Cancer Screening and Symptoms
Medical professionals are not expected to be perfect, but there is a reasonable expectation for them to notice possible signs of cancer and to take the steps necessary to make a proper diagnosis. Doctors can avoid delaying a breast cancer diagnosis by pursuing every potential breast complaint to resolution, following common breast cancer screening guidelines, and tracking the results of the studies ordered. If there are any obvious symptoms or causes for concern, it is the responsibility of the medical care provider to follow up, order more tests, or to refer the patient to an oncologist.
Signs of symptoms of breast cancer that should merit further study include:
- Mammographic abnormalities
- A dominant breast mass
- Skin thickening
- Breast pain
- Nipple discharge
- Skin dimpling
- Filing a Medical Malpractice Claim
Not every woman with these symptoms has breast cancer. Even so, it is crucial for doctors to notice these symptoms and to take the steps necessary to make an accurate diagnosis. It is negligence to be presented with potential signs of cancer and then fail to order a test, fail to read a test correctly, or delay diagnosis.
To have a successful malpractice claim in a cancer misdiagnosis case, a patient must prove that the physician had a duty of care, that they breached that duty, and that the breach of duty caused the patient harm. In other words, to have a successful claim, you must show that the physician or medical professional was responsible for your diagnosis, that they acted negligently in making that diagnosis, and that the misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis caused you actual harm.
Compensation for Victims of Misdiagnosed Breast Cancer in Florida
Victims of medical malpractice can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, hospitalization costs, expenses relating to unnecessary treatments, loss of income, loss of earning potential, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. Individuals who have lost loved ones as a result of failure to diagnose breast cancer can file a wrongful death against the physician, hospital, or medical professional responsible for the misdiagnosis.
Contact Our Jacksonville Failure to Diagnose Breast Cancer Attorneys
The Jacksonville medical malpractice attorneys at Farah & Farah understand how critical an early cancer diagnosis can be for patients and their ability to recover or even survive. If you or a loved one has been a victim of breast cancer misdiagnosis, please call us at 855-797-9899 for more information about pursuing your legal rights.