Failure to Diagnose or Erroneous Diagnosis

"Failure to Diagnose" or "Erroneous Diagnosis" is considered medical malpractice. In either failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing a condition, harm or death may be inflicted on a person for a potentially treatable condition through delayed or missed therapy or treatment.

A diagnosis failure or error by a doctor or medical practitioner can occur with almost any disease or condition. Misdiagnosed conditions leading to the most rapid damage may include heart attack, breast cancer, appendicitis, lung cancer, and colon cancer. Serious conditions such as diabetes and hypertension are also commonly undiagnosed.

Did your condition worsen or did a loved one perish after hearing any of the following from a doctor or medical practitioner?

  • "It's all in your head."
  • "It's part of the normal aging process."
  • "You can expect some problems at your age."
  • "You're just getting old."
  • "You'll just need to live with it."
  • "You're imagining it."
  • "It's almost impossible."
  • "That's not a side effect."
  • "That medicine would not do that."

Were you or a loved one treated in any of the following manners?

  • Adverse effects were attributed to age.
  • The importance of your symptoms was dismissed.
  • Complaints were ignored.
  • You were not taken seriously.
  • Treated as if any illness were just in your head.
  • Dismissed in that what you described was not possible.
  • Told outright that a drug or condition was not the cause.
  • Had a pharmacist or doctor in direct conflict with each other.
  • Had one or more doctors in direct conflict with each other.
  • Told that only a small percentage of people had side effects.
  • Given a label or name for your illness where you felt it was just to satisfy you.
  • You got sicker or felt worse until eventually you could not be ignored.
  • You were only treated for your symptoms without any diagnosis of a cause.

Putting aside hypochondria, any of these scenarios could be a potential red flag for a failed diagnosis or erroneous diagnosis. We always recommend that you be aware of all of your symptoms and medical history when talking with your doctors. You need to research and be as knowledgeable about your condition as possible. Doctors should also be encouraged to communicate with each other. However, even if you take every precautionary step, an erroneous diagnosis or outright failure to diagnose an illness or sickness can still occur.

If you believe that you may have a medical malpractice case, call the Sweeney Law Firm to get your questions answered and learn your legal rights. There is no cost or obligation for us to evaluate your case.