Extreme Dangers Of Thyroid-Related Misdiagnosis
The butterfly-shaped gland known as the thyroid handles functions within the human body that might surprise you given its seemingly diminutive stature. This gland is responsible for ensuring many important organs work, including the brain, liver, heart, skin, and kidneys. As a result, when you experience issues with your thyroid, other implications will inevitably follow. However, statistics from the American Thyroid Association (ATA) point out some interesting trends. While there are many consequences from a thyroid condition, up to 60 percent of individuals with thyroid disease are unaware that they have it. An estimated 20 million people in the US have some type of thyroid condition, and women are 5 to 8 times more likely than men to have issues.
Still, many thyroid conditions can easily be managed with proper medical attention, as long as the patient is promptly, properly diagnosed. Unfortunately, health care providers may err in detecting thyroid disease for a variety of reasons. You should discuss your situation with a Miami misdiagnosis lawyer if you have concerns about care you received, but an overview of thyroid diagnosis mistakes may also be helpful.
Functions of the Thyroid
Lying just under the Adam’s Apple, the sole job of the thyroid is to generate hormones that regulate metabolism, blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate, and other functions. The thyroid secretes these hormones into the bloodstream, where they are carried to parts of the body that rely on them.
When the thyroid is out of balance, implications include:
Hyperthyroidism: When your thyroid is overactive, it excretes too much of the hormones into your body. Hyperthyroidism speeds up your metabolism too much, leading to weight loss, rapid heartbeat, sweating, nervousness, and mood swings.
Hypothyroidism: An under-active thyroid does not produce enough of the necessary hormones, so all associated organs and bodily functions will feel the impact. Hypothyroidism is linked to fatigue, weight gain, depression, and constipation.
How Thyroid Disease Goes Undiagnosed
In reviewing the symptoms of a thyroid condition, you can see how they could be mistaken for emotional issues, depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. Knowing that thyroid conditions are so common – especially among women – physicians should also know to order screenings. When a health care provider misdiagnoses thyroid condition for a mental disorder, you might be prescribed extremely powerful antidepressants, mood stabilizers, sedatives, or other controlled substances. Meanwhile, your undiagnosed thyroid condition goes untreated, potentially leading to:
- High cholesterol
- Heart disease
- Premature osteoporosis
In Florida, you may be entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice claim if you can prove that your health care provider was negligent in not diagnosing thyroid disease; you must also have proof that the misdiagnosis caused you direct harm. With sufficient evidence and your lawyer’s help, you could recover for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Consult with a Florida Diagnosis Errors Attorney Regarding Legal Options
To learn more about your rights and remedies after a physician misdiagnosed a thyroid condition, please contact Freidin Brown, P.A. We can schedule a free consultation at our offices in Miami or Fort Myers, FL.