Misdiagnosis is one of the most common incidents of medical malpractice across the country. Individuals worried about their symptoms trust that doctors can tell them what is happening. However, those doctors we think we can trust misdiagnose nearly 40% of people every year.
Many of those people might suspect that they received a misdiagnosis, but they do not report anything. If someone has a gut feeling that the doctor gave them the wrong diagnosis, there are a few steps they can take to protect themselves.
1. Monitor your condition and overall health
Some of the most common misdiagnoses include:
- Heart conditions
- Lyme disease
If the doctor's treatment for someone's diagnosis is not working, that can often confirm the misdiagnosis. However, it is helpful for individuals to monitor all of their symptoms and keep a comprehensive record of any changes in their condition. This can provide them with essential evidence of a misdiagnosis.
It may also be beneficial to do some research, but it is important to use official sites, such as the Mayo Clinic.
2. Speak with your doctor
It is often worth it to speak with the doctor again. If someone has taken some time to list the details of their symptoms and bring in a record for their doctor, it is possible that the notes could provide evidence of an accurate diagnosis.
3. Request a second opinion from a different doctor
It is natural to feel skeptical of other medical professionals, especially if one doctor continues to give a wrong diagnosis or refuses to listen.
However, a medical malpractice claim almost always requires someone to obtain a second opinion from another medical professional. It might be helpful to ask friends and family about the physicians they see, so individuals can find a trustworthy medical professional to provide a second opinion about their condition and their diagnosis.
4. Do not be afraid to act
40% of people receive misdiagnoses, but many of them do not report an incorrect diagnosis at all. This can leave people facing significant risk and pain from various misdiagnosed health conditions, from life-threatening cancer to endometriosis.
Individuals should not have to face that risk. After all, medical professionals have a responsibility to provide the best possible standard of care to their patients. Incidents of misdiagnoses might be common, but they are entirely preventable.
It is important for individuals to speak up against medical negligence, especially if they suspect a misdiagnosis.