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The Consequences of a Delayed Cancer Diagnosis

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately

15% of cancers are either misdiagnosed or considered of no consequence by
patients physicians. A delayed diagnosis hurts, because time never benefits the
cancer patient. In many instances, delayed diagnosis causes an initially
treatable condition to become more difficult or impossible to treat. Serious
complications, including wrongful death or disfigurement may result.

Delayed diagnosis of cancer is a tragic occurrence. The patient and his or her
family are likely to suffer frustration and emotional pain in the aftermath of
physician negligence. Identifying a sophisticated, experienced medical
malpractice law firm may assist patients and families dealing with the wrongful
death of a loved one.
Medical Experts and Delayed Diagnosis of Cancer
Delayed diagnosis of cancer cases are complex. The physicians involved in the
defense will certainly attest that they did everything required according to the
standard of care. They often state that an earlier diagnosis would have made no
difference to the patients current outcome. A medical malpractice legal team
must have established relationships with medical networks to refute defendants
statements to obtain best results for patients and their families.
Negligence and Delayed Diagnosis of Cancer
Delayed diagnosis of cancer may result from many negligent actions, including:
1. Lost lab results, receiving the lab results of others
2. Improperly read imaging, including MRIs, CT scans, PET scans, X-rays,
3. Misinterpretation of lab test results

4. Technology error or malfunction

5. Failure to identify a tumor
6. Incorrect performance of procedure(s)
7. Failure to perform necessary diagnostic tests, e.g. CT scan
8. Failure of the physician to refer the patient to the proper specialist, e.g.
referring patient to a neurologist instead of a neuro-otologist
Potentially Liable Professionals
In many cases, the patient or his or her family brings a claim against potentially
liable parties, such as primary care physicians, specialists, radiologists, and
others, whose negligence resulted in a delayed diagnosis of cancer.
The primary care physician may have decided against ordering diagnostic tests
or may not have issued the proper specialist referral. The radiologist may have
misread imaging studies. A surgeon may have failed to diagnose the extent of
the tumors progress or identify suspicious tissue. He or she may have decided
not to refer the patient to other specialists. Sometimes, the manufacturer of
technology may be liable when test equipment does not work properly.
Patient Actions and Delayed Diagnosis of Cancer
A patient must take several key steps after he or she is diagnosed with cancer
(after what the patient believes is a delay in diagnosis):
1. Contact an experienced medical malpractice law firm to discuss the case.
It is important to initiate the legal process as soon as possible in order to
preserve testimony of all involved.
2. The patient and/or family should gather medical records, including notes,
test results, imaging study discs, and emails or other correspondence
from the potentially liable parties.
3. The attorney will guide the patient and/or family through the necessary
4. The patient and/or family should keep careful records of medical
appointments, bills, receipts, etc.

Importance of Early Cancer Diagnosis

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), identification of early stage
breast cancer, lung cancer, cervical cancer, colon cancer, ovarian cancer or
testicular cancer provides the patient with the best chance of recovery.
Delayed diagnosis of cancer requires the patient to frequently suffer more
aggressive, painful treatments such as major surgery, chemotherapy, or
radiation treatments.
Have you or a loved one suffered due to a late cancer diagnosis? Contact to speak with a top New York medical malpractice
lawyer today.
The information in the above article is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice.
You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation.
We invite you to contact Danker, Milstein & Ruffo, P.C., and welcome your calls,
letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client
relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such
time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.