Failure To Diagnose

When doctors don’t see what’s wrong, we can make things right

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You can’t fix a problem if you don’t see the problem. In the practice of medicine, a physician’s failure to make a timely and correct diagnosis of a patient’s medical condition can cost that patient the opportunity to treat that condition in a timely manner. Prompt intervention and treatment are often critical to the successful resolution of most diseases and other medical conditions, and a doctor’s failure to make a timely diagnosis can allow a disease to progress to a point where the outcome is irrevocably compromised.

Unfortunately, incorrect and missed diagnoses happen all too frequently every year, causing countless patients and their families to suffer every year. According to a 2014 study, an estimated 12 million American adults are misdiagnosed each year; the equivalent of one out of every 20 patients. In approximately half of those cases, the incorrect or missed diagnosis resulted in harm to the patient.

Failure to diagnose a significant medical condition in a timely manner or delaying a diagnosis can deny a patient the opportunity for proper treatment while the condition is still manageable. This type of medical malpractice is often seen all types of cancer and heart disease.

But there is a wide range of other medical conditions that require accurate, timely diagnoses from doctors and other healthcare professionals.

Examples include Bowl Injuries, Diabetes, Bacterium, Endocarditis, Ketoacidosis, Hypertension, Bacterial Meningitis, Hernia, Appendicitis, Cerebral Aneurysm, Anaphylaxis, and Lyme disease.

Maine’s best trial lawyers can get you the answers, care, and compensation you deserve

When doctors, radiologists, oncologists, or other healthcare professionals fail to follow the proper standard of care when diagnosing a patient and the patient suffers harm as a result, their negligence can be the basis for a medical malpractice claim for compensation. In fact, one study concluded that missed or incorrect diagnoses are the most common basis for medical malpractice claims.

It can be difficult to know whether your healthcare provider should have diagnosed and initiated treatment for your condition earlier, whether they breached their duty of care, and whether that breach contributed to your suffering. The lawyers at Berman & Simmons, widely respected as the best medical malpractice and personal injury attorneys in Maine, can get you the answers to those questions, and will work tirelessly to obtain the full compensation you deserve for losses caused by a failure to diagnose.

Our record of success in medical malpractice cases is second to none. With attorneys who combine their legal talent with extensive medical knowledge and resources that give us access to the world’s leading and most highly credentialed medical experts, Berman & Simmons has received over $1.35 billion for our clients, including several of the largest medical malpractice jury verdicts and settlements ever obtained in Maine.

We can identify and prove the malpractice that led to the negligent failure to diagnose your condition

No matter the underlying reason your doctors negligently failed to diagnose and treat your condition, we can expose the mistake and prove to a judge or jury that it was the reason for your harms and losses.

Some of the most common errors that lead to a failure to diagnose include:

  • Failure to order appropriate diagnostic tests;
  • Mistakes by physicians interpreting test results;
  • Inadequate physical examinations;
  • Disregarding patient complaints;
  • Delay in making a necessary referral to a specialist;
  • Failure to perform indicated tests and screenings; and
  • Failure to provide appropriate follow-up care.

Lawyers dedicated to making your life better

The reality is that medical malpractice affects the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans every year. But abstract statistics mean little when you are trying to deal with the immediate challenges you are facing. At Berman & Simmons, we want to relieve some of these burdens so you can devote your time and energy to recovering.

When you speak with us at your free initial consultation, we will carefully and patiently listen to your story as part of our comprehensive effort to understand what happened. We will then bring our extensive experience and unmatched resources to bear on your behalf, developing solutions that can make your life better, including obtaining payment for or deferral of your debts until we resolve your case.

Attorney Susan Faunce working remotely

Your free consultation is a phone call away. Contact Berman & Simmons today.

Maine has strict statutes of limitations for filing medical malpractice complaints, so it’s critical to consult with us as soon as possible if you think you or a loved one may be a victim of a missed or incorrect diagnosis. Your initial consultation is free, and you pay nothing unless we obtain compensation for you by settlement or jury verdict, so there is no reason not to call.

Please contact Berman & Simmons today at (207)784-3576. Our Maine medical malpractice attorneys are ready to help you through this difficult time so you can recover and rebuild your life.

Ask Questions. We Have Answers.

Get Peace of Mind

It never hurts to consult an attorney regardless of whether you decide to move forward.

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    You may need to discuss whether an autopsy is necessary to prove that the negligence caused a love one’s death.

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    Obtaining complete medical records from hospitals and other providers is a daunting task.

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    Maine’s statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases is short in comparison to the statute of limitations for general personal injury claims.

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    Important evidence may be lost or degraded over time.

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    You’ll need help navigating your medical care and dealing with financial pressures.

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    You need peace of mind to focus on your recovery.

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  • How should I talk to a lawyer about failure to diagnose?

    Medical malpractice attorneys are happy to help you address your failure to diagnose claim. Many offer same-day free consultations and take no fee unless your case succeeds.

    It is always a good idea to bring any medical records you have to your appointment. We recommend taking notes beforehand so you don’t forget to mention important details, including the names of facilities and physicians that provided treatments, a timeline of events, relevant symptoms and diagnoses, dates of missed work, and details of other losses you may have suffered.

  • Can you sue a medical provider for failure to diagnose?

    Yes. Medical providers are expected to conform to leading medical standards. Provided a provider/patient relationship existed, if your provider failed to provide appropriate testing or ask necessary questions, you may sue for damages related to any new or worsening conditions that resulted.

  • How do you prove failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis?

    Expert testimony is the most common way to establish medical malpractice. This involves hiring a similarly credentialed physician to review your medical history. If the expert agrees with your claim, they will state under oath that your physician’s failure to diagnose gave rise to the new or worsening conditions.

  • Is failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis medical malpractice?

    Failure to diagnose and misdiagnosis are both forms of medical malpractice. In any malpractice claim, the patient generally must prove that a provider/patient relationship existed, that the physician breached the standard of care, and that the patient suffered damages as a result.

  • Is there a statute of limitations for failure to diagnose lawsuits?

    In Maine, failure to diagnose lawsuits generally have a three-year statute of limitations, which begins running the moment the medical malpractice occurs. This means that once you suffer injury due to failure to diagnose, you have three years from that day to bring a claim against your provider. 

    While many failure to diagnose cases are obvious, some may be more difficult to pinpoint.  We recommend contacting a medical malpractice attorney as soon as you suspect your medical provider’s negligence caused you harm.

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