Sometimes doctors make mistakes by failing to diagnose a health problem, diagnosing the wrong condition (misdiagnosis) or delaying the diagnosis. These hospital errors can cause serious damage and injury. Common mistakes include:
- Failing to take a patient’s history into account
- Failing to examine a patient properly or to note all of their symptoms
- Failing to carry out the right investigations (including X-rays, scans and blood tests)
- Failing to interpret investigations properly
- Making administrative errors – for example, losing or mixing up patient records, or noting the wrong diagnosis, treatment or medication on a patient’s chart
For many conditions and injuries, early diagnosis can make all the difference when it comes to making a full and speedy recovery. Any avoidable delays can cause significant damage, or lead to the worsening of a condition. In the worst cases, a delayed diagnosis can cause a treatable illness to advance into a life-threatening situation.
Getting the diagnosis wrong can be just as catastrophic for the patient’s health and wellbeing. An incorrect diagnosis usually leads to the wrong treatment or medication being administered. At best, this treatment will have no effect – which of course means that the actual illness or injury isn’t being treated. At worst, the treatment can worsen the illness, cause unwanted side effects or lead to other unwanted outcomes.
If you believe that your doctor misdiagnosed a condition or unnecessarily delayed your diagnosis, please contact McGinley Solicitors as soon as possible. We can offer expert advice on whether you can claim and what to do next, drawing on our years of specialist experience working on clinical and medical negligence claims.