When is a Misdiagnosis Medical Malpractice?

You trust your doctor to make an accurate and timely diagnosis when you are ill and if they do not, you could suffer serious consequences. Your condition may become worse as you do not receive the treatment you need, or you may even receive treatment for a condition you do not suffer from. When this is the case, you may have a medical malpractice lawsuit. 

It is important to note that not all cases of misdiagnosis form the basis of a medical malpractice lawsuit. To be successful with a lawsuit, you must prove the medical provider was negligent, which is a complex process. A Miami medical malpractice lawyer can walk you through the elements of a medical malpractice claim, and determine if you have a case.

What is a Medical Misdiagnosis?

A medical misdiagnosis can happen in several ways. The most common causes of medical misdiagnosis include:

  • Failing to listen to the patient’s symptoms and improperly communicating;
  • Failing to investigate possible causes of the patient’s symptoms;
  • Failing to screen for a specific medical condition, particularly if the patient is considered to be high risk for it;
  • Failing to order the appropriate testing for a disease or illness;
  • Misinterpretation of lab results; and 
  • Failing to refer a patient to a specialist when necessary.

Proving Medical Misdiagnosis

Under the law, physicians are not considered responsible for mistakes made, as long as they were made with reasonable care. As such, proving a medical misdiagnosis case can become quite difficult. To prove your case, you must establish the following elements:

  • There was a doctor-patient relationship: Proving a doctor-patient relationship only means that you saw a doctor and they agreed to diagnose and treat you. If a doctor has already provided a diagnosis, this relationship likely exists.
  • The doctor was negligent: To prove medical negligence, you must prove the doctor that diagnosed you did not act with the same reasonable care another doctor in the same field would have in the same situation.
  • You suffered harm as a result: When filing a medical malpractice claim, you are trying to recover compensation for the damages, or losses, you sustained. If a doctor misdiagnosed you but you did not suffer harm as a result, you do not have a valid claim. You must show that you sustained injuries or other harm due to the misdiagnosis.

Proving medical negligence after a misdiagnosis is not easy. Doctors are allowed to use a trial and error approach when diagnosing a patient, which could lead to a misdiagnosis. The most important, and often the most complex, element of proving your claim is proving your doctor did not act as another reasonable doctor would have in the same situation.

Call Our Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Miami Today

If you have suffered due to a misdiagnosis, our Miami medical malpractice lawyers at Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein, LLP can provide the sound legal advice you need. Our seasoned attorneys know how to prove medical negligence, and we will put our experience to work for you. Call us today at 305-371-2692 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.