Serious Implications From Misdiagnosis Of A Spinal Cord Condition
One of the most damaging types of medical errors made by Florida health care providers is misdiagnosis. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Medical report that the most common medical conditions that lead to diagnostic errors include failure to identify stroke, lung cancer, and blood infections, but issues with spinal cord misdiagnosis are also cause for concern. The spine is the human body’s line of communication, carrying messages to and from the brain to other systems, organs, and muscles. Disruptions, which may occur from illness or injury, prevent critical information from getting through.
As a result, an accurate, timely diagnosis of a spinal cord condition is essential. Various forms of negligence can interfere with proper assessment, which means you cannot get on a course of treatment. A Miami misdiagnosis attorney can explain your legal options if you were harmed by such an error, but an overview may be useful.
Mistakes in Diagnosing Spinal Cord Issues
Though the detail may vary, health care providers will typically go through a series of steps in diagnosing a medical condition:
- Assessing the patient’s history and medical records
- Performing a physical exam
- Evaluating the need for additional imaging tests and screenings
- Detecting key indicators of a medical disorder
- Comparing all information gathered to factors of known conditions
- Eliminating conditions that do not match with the patient’s presentation
- Reviewing potential diagnoses and conducting further tests
Based upon these steps, you can see where both system-wide errors and mistakes by individual physicians can lead to misdiagnosis – and where there may be overlap. For instance, a hospital may be negligent in maintaining imaging and lab equipment, leading your doctor to miss a spinal cord condition. Your physician might be negligent by not ordering an MRI, CT scan, or other test, which means a spinal issue will not be discovered.
How Misdiagnosis Impacts Treatment of Spinal Cord Conditions
The biggest concerns with diagnostic errors are that the patient receives improper medical care that may be invasive or harmful, while the underlying condition goes untreated. Failure to detect a fractured vertebrae or herniated or bulging disc could leave you with severe, chronic pain or loss of limb function. An undiagnosed spinal tumor could lead to paralysis of extremities, paraplegia, or quadriplegia. In addition, cancers that are not properly treated can become terminal.
Remedies for Patients
Misdiagnosis is a form of medical malpractice, which is in turn a type of personal injury case. However, there are additional requirements under Florida law when you are seeking damages from a health care provider. Before filing suit, you must conduct an investigation and obtain a medical expert’s verified statement that your evidence supports a legitimate medical malpractice claim.
Count on Our Florida Diagnosis Errors Lawyers for Legal Help
For more information on your rights and remedies after misdiagnosis of a spinal cord condition, please contact Freidin Brown, P.A. We can schedule a complimentary case review at our offices in Miami or Fort Myers, FL.