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2 common reasons for medical misdiagnosis

On Behalf of | May 5, 2024 | Accidents & Incidents

A speedy and accurate diagnosis is one of the most critical elements of medical treatment. In some cases, the timing of just a few days when it comes to diagnosis can mean the difference between life and death.

Doctors and medical facilities are well aware of this fact, and they also know that they have a legal duty to act in accordance with a high standard of care. Unfortunately, misdiagnoses can – and do – occur and there are several primary reasons for this. Below are two of the most common.

Failing to communicate

Communication is an aspect of medical diagnosis and treatment that should not be overlooked. This includes communication between doctor and patient. A patient can only describe their symptoms to the best of their ability. It is up to doctors to listen appropriately, record symptoms and make an assessment from there. Some studies indicate that doctors have a habit of interrupting patients. Doing so at the wrong times could mean missing out on vital information and ultimately making an incorrect diagnosis.

Communication is also vital between different medical departments and administration staff. A doctor often needs to handle medical records correctly to diagnose a patient accurately. These records then need to be adjusted appropriately if the patient is passed on to another department, and so on.

Doctor inexperience

It is no secret that staff in healthcare staff tend to have busy workloads. An experienced doctor in any facility may be dealing with multiple patients every day. Less experienced doctors may be capable, but not quite ready to diagnose more complex conditions. A medical facility should not allow a doctor who is out of their depth to make a definitive diagnosis. The safety of patients cannot be sacrificed for the sake of obtaining a speedy diagnosis.

If your health condition has been worsened by a delayed diagnosis or a missed diagnosis handed down by your medical team, compensation might be a possibility. Seeking legal guidance will give you a better idea of whether or not negligence was a factor in your case and whether it is ultimately actionable.