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Serious Consequences of a False Positive Lung Cancer Diagnosis


You’ll no doubt breathe a sigh of relief to learn that your lung cancer was misdiagnosed and that you don’t actually suffer from this disease – the number one cancer-related cause of death in the US. However, as it dawns on you that you’ve endured enormous health strife from treatment, you might wonder how common it is for physicians to make a false positive lung cancer diagnosis. An article published by the New England Journal of Medicine revealed a false-positive rate of up to 97.5 percent, though other studies indicate lower incidence.

The relief of not having lung cancer quickly wears off when you look at the bigger picture, especially the health consequences of harsh, painful treatment you experienced. A Florida cancer misdiagnosis attorney can explain in more detail, but you should get a basic understanding of your rights. 

Types of Lung Cancer Treatment: Health care providers make decisions regarding treatment for lung cancer based upon multiple factors, including the type, stage, and your overall physical health. Your medical care might include one or more of the following:

  • Surgery: If detected early and the lung cancer has not spread, it may be possible to resolve through surgical removal of a tumor. This method isn’t as common as other because the cancer has usually penetrated other areas. Plus, not all patients can withstand having lung tissue removed.
  • Radiation Therapy: This option also targets specific cancer cells, by aiming doses of high-energy rays to kill them. The machine is similar to an x-ray, but administers much more potent radiation.
  • Chemotherapy: Typically administered intravenously, chemo drugs are used to shrink or kill off cancerous cells. This may be a treatment option when lung cancer has spread to multiple parts of the body. Under such circumstances, radiation therapy and surgery would not effectively eliminate all traces of cancer. Chemo may include one or a series of injections, or the medication may be infused into the blood stream over time.

Side Effects of Lung Cancer Treatment Can Be Severe: When you consider the fact that all types of treatment are designed to kill off cancerous cells, it’s obvious that there will be consequences for other organs and tissues. For instance, chemo can lead to hair loss, sores in the mouth, nausea, vomiting, and other digestive discomfort, so it’s common for patients to experience significant weight loss. Plus, chemo affects blood-making cells. You’re more prone to infection, bruising, and fatigue.

With radiation therapy, the collateral consequences depend on the site where the rays are targeted. Side effects may include:

  • Skin irritation, redness, blistering, and peeling;
  • Hair loss;
  • Nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite;
  • Coughing, difficulty breathing, and breathlessness; and,
  • A sore throat or trouble swallowing.

Set Up a Consultation with a Florida Medical Misdiagnosis Lawyer 

When bad news about lung cancer turns into good news that you don’t have it, it’s still possible that you’ve suffered tremendously from a cancer misdiagnosis. To learn more about your legal options, please contact Freidin Brown, P.A. to set up a free consultation. One of our Miami misdiagnosis attorneys can meet with you at our offices to review your circumstances.


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