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Failure to Diagnose May Be Malpractice

Many times you go to the doctors because something just doesn't feel right. You may have an unexplained pain in your breast, or are experiencing constant headaches, or have difficulty breathing. Your doctor may send you to radiology for a test - such as an MRI, an CT Scan, or an x-ray. These tools are key in making the proper diagnosis - the first step in treating your condition. When medical professionals fail to accurately perform, read or communicate the results, they may be liable for medical malpractice based on radiology errors. A recent study looked at the prevalence of radiology malpractice claims, and the underlying causes. According to the report, roughly 60% of the claims were based on a failure to diagnose a medical condition, and nearly half of those were based on the failure to accurately interpret the data they found. The best chance at an optimal recovery is to treat a medical condition as soon as possible. Delays in diagnosis and treatment can lead to catastrophic, life long harm.

Another area of concern was communication. This included communication between doctor and service provider and between doctor and patient. Failures to clearly indicate what the doctor is looking for, and to let the patient know what the results reveal and mean, is crucial.

The authors of the study suggested more oversight, peer review and greater education.

For more information, or if you or a loved one suffered injury as a result of a radiology error, please contact our dedicated Los Angeles medical malpractice lawyers at Bostwick & Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation.


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