Indianapolis Misdiagnosis Attorneys
Diagnostic Errors in Indiana
Diagnostic errors—including misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, and failure to diagnose—are among the most common forms of medical malpractice in the United States. As many as 12 million adults are affected by diagnostic errors every single year, leading to an estimated 40,000 to 80,000 deaths. While anyone can receive an incorrect diagnosis, women and minorities are statistically the most at risk.
When doctors, specialists, and other medical professionals fail to diagnose patients accurately and promptly, those patients cannot receive the often-critical care they need. If you or someone you love suffered harm due to misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or failure to diagnose, you could be entitled to financial compensation. At Hovde Dassow + Deets, our Indianapolis misdiagnosis attorneys represent clients affected by all types of medical malpractice, including diagnostic errors. We fight for maximum compensation and seek the justice you and your family deserve.
What Is Medical Misdiagnosis?
Medical misdiagnosis, or simply misdiagnosis, is a term used to refer to various types of diagnostic errors. When these errors result in patient harm, victims and/or their families have the right to pursue legal action against the liable parties.
Some examples of misdiagnosis include:
- Incorrect diagnosis
- Delayed diagnosis
- Missed diagnosis/failure to diagnose
- Failure to diagnose a related or unrelated condition
- Failure to recognize complications
These and other diagnostic errors occur for a variety of reasons, including dismissal of patients’ symptoms, failure to order/conduct proper diagnostic tests, misinterpretation of test results, lab misanalysis and errors, failure to follow up, incomplete patient examinations, poor communication, lack of knowledge, missing patient information, and more.
What Are the Most Common Misdiagnoses?
Although rare illnesses and medical conditions are more likely to be incorrectly diagnosed, relatively common health issues are also frequently misdiagnosed by doctors, specialists, and medical providers nationwide. According to a recent study, 1 in 10 patients with major vascular events, infections, and cancers (collectively known as “the big three”) are misdiagnosed.
Some of the most common improperly diagnosed medical conditions in the U.S. include:
- Spinal abscesses
- Lung cancer
- Heart attacks
- Aortic aneurysms and dissections
- Pulmonary embolism
- Lyme disease
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Parkinson’s disease
- Celiac disease
- Bipolar disorder
- Thyroid disease
When medical providers misdiagnose or meaningful delay diagnoses of certain serious medical conditions, patients can experience devastating injury, permanent disability, and death. Often, patients and/or their families are left to pick up the pieces—but you don’t have to face the aftermath alone. Get in touch with our team today to discuss your situation and learn whether you have a case.
Proving Negligence in a Diagnostic Error Case
To have a case for medical malpractice following a suspected diagnostic error, you will need to prove several important elements:
- Duty of Care: First, you must establish that the medical provider or entity against whom you are bringing the claim (the “defendant”) owed you a duty of care. This means that they had a legal responsibility to uphold the accepted standard of care in responding to or treating your illness, injury, or medical condition. Typically, proving the existence of a doctor-patient relationship is sufficient for establishing the duty of care.
- Breach: Next, you must prove that the defendant breached the accepted standard of care, meaning they did not act in the same way that another qualified medical provider would have in the same or similar circumstances. If your doctor conducted various tests that were inconclusive before referring you to a specialist, this does not necessarily constitute a breach of the standard of care. However, if your doctor dismissed your symptoms or failed to order any tests, you could have a case.
- Injury: You will also need to prove that you were injured (whether physical, emotional, or financially) or suffered measurable harm. You must prove that you sustained damages, such as medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, lost enjoyment of life, etc. If a medical provider gave the wrong diagnosis, but you were not injured, you do not have a case.
- Causation: Lastly, you must prove that the defendant’s breach of the accepted standard of care was the direct or proximate cause of your injuries and/or damages. In other words, you will have to show that you would not have been harmed had the medical provider who treated you upheld the standard of care, i.e., by acting as another qualified medical provider could reasonably have been expected to act in the same or similar circumstances.
At Hovde Dassow + Deets, we assist our clients in proving each of these key elements. Our attorneys work with industry-leading experts, including medical professionals, who provide critical expert testimony in our clients’ cases. This is nearly always necessary in complex diagnostic error cases and other claims involving allegations of medical negligence.
Let Our Firm Fight for You
The consequences of a diagnostic error can be devastating. At Hovde Dassow + Deets, our Indianapolis misdiagnosis lawyers understand the significant impact these mistakes have on victims and their families. We are deeply committed to helping each and every one of our clients fight for the full, fair compensation they are owed. Our aggressive approach to litigation has helped us recover more than $300 million total in compensation for our clients.
With over a century of combined experience and a reputation for zealous client advocacy, our firm is ready to help you navigate the legal process. If you believe that you or someone you love was harmed due to misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or a missed diagnosis, reach out to Hovde Dassow + Deets today to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.
Words can not express how exceptional Rick Hovde and Kelly Faulk are in the Field of Medical Malpractice- Bob D
You can tell we're just not a client but a family that they care about.- Steve H.
The best thing about working with Hovde Dassow + Deets was Nick's professionalism & knowledge.- Sarah S.
Our family very much appreciates the services we received from Nick Deets & his staff.- Teresa S.
Very professional, honest, upfront all throughout the case.- John H.