Prior posts on this Chicago personal injury law blog have talked about the legal requirements for bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Generally, a patient and a doctor must have a relationship before a claim can be filed, meaning that the doctor has agreed to treat the patient or otherwise has some duty to provide care to the individual. In addition to a pre-existing relationship, a doctor must do or fail to do something with regard to the patient that a reasonable doctor would have done properly given the facts of the case.
When a patient suffers harm and the preceding elements of the claim exist, that patient may have a lawsuit based on malpractice against a doctor. Though surgical errors and birth injuries occur more than they should, misdiagnosis is a common basis for medical malpractice claims. Misdiagnosis can involve a doctor diagnosing a patient with an erroneous condition or a doctor failing to diagnose a patient with an actual and present malady.
From infections to cancer, a myriad of medical ailments can be misdiagnosed. While some misdiagnoses may result in patients feeling sick longer than this necessary given their health problems, others can have serious consequences. The misdiagnosis of a potentially fatal disease could result in a patient losing his life due to the mistakes made by his health care professional.
Action on the part of patients during their visits with medical professionals can help prevent misdiagnoses from occurring. Asking questions and being involved in one's own health can keep doctors on the right track. However, many individuals may not learn of their misdiagnoses until after problems have begun to set in. In such situations, those patients may choose to pursue their misdiagnosis-related damages through lawsuits.
The law firm of Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish handle personal injury claims based on misdiagnosis and the failure to diagnose medical conditions. Its attorneys work with their clients to address the required elements of personal injury malpractice cases and prepare cases that are heard in the courts of the greater Chicago metropolitan area. While no legal outcome can ever be guaranteed, effective case preparation from the beginning of a malpractice matter can help misdiagnosis victims keep their lawsuits on track as they proceed through court.