Fort Lauderdale Incorrect Diagnosis Lawyer
An incorrect diagnosis from a doctor or other healthcare professional can complicate an existing medical issue and can cause untold amounts of additional suffering for a patient. Medical professionals have a standard of care they must meet with their patients, and when they fail to meet that standard by incorrectly diagnosing a patient they must be held accountable. At the Leifer Law Firm, our Fort Lauderdale incorrect diagnosis lawyers understand the pain that can come from an incorrect diagnosis and are here to help.
Common Causes of Incorrect Diagnoses
Doctors, physician assistants, nurses, and other medical professionals are all capable of rendering an incorrect diagnosis of a patient. Incorrect diagnoses occur for a variety of reasons, typically through negligence or recklessness, but the most common reasons for an incorrect diagnosis include the following:
- Failure to perform necessary tests
- Failure to train nurses and other medical staff
- Misreading test results
- Faulty diagnostic equipment
- Hospital or paperwork error
- Distractions in the workplace
- Failure to consider full medical history
- Failure to recognize symptoms
- Failure to recognize complications
Effects of an Incorrect Diagnosis
The effects of an incorrect diagnosis on a patient cannot be understated. First and foremost, the true medical issue is not being treated and could potentially get worse. This leads to continuous follow up doctor visits, diagnostic testing, potential hospital stays, and other highly expensive treatment. The patient’s health could worsen, and the recommended treatment for the incorrect diagnosis could make the situation even worse. In the worst case scenarios, the recipient of an incorrect diagnosis could die as a result.
Incorrect Diagnosis Medical Malpractice
It is important to note that not all incorrect diagnoses rise to the level of medical malpractice if the doctor used reasonable care. In order to prove medical malpractice, the victim must prove that the doctor breached their duty of care to the patient through negligent or reckless practices. First, it must be shown that there was a duty of care through a doctor-patient relationship. Second, that the duty was breached with an incorrect diagnosis through negligence or recklessness. Third, that as a direct result the patient was harmed in a way that would not have happened but for the incorrect diagnosis.
The most common way to prove this breach is to demonstrate that another doctor in the same field and with the same level of expertise would not have made an incorrect diagnosis in similar circumstances. In court, this is accomplished through the use of expert witnesses, medical history review, depositions, and other evidence that proves negligence or recklessness on the part of the medical professional.
In Florida, the law states that a lawsuit for medical malpractice must be filed within two years from the date that the incorrect diagnosis was discovered and no later than four years from the original date of the incorrect diagnosis. The only exception is for an incorrect diagnosis given to a child before their eighth birthday. If not, the lawsuit could be thrown out for violating the statute of limitations.
Call Our Office Today
The consequences of an incorrect diagnosis can have devastating effects on your health and your quality of life. If you believe that you are the victim of an incorrect diagnosis by your doctor or other healthcare professional in the Fort Lauderdale area, call or contact our office today for a free consultation of your case.