Do you know the term “misdiagnosis?” It means when a doctor or another medical professional says you have a particular condition, but it’s not the case. A misdiagnosis can wreak havoc on your life and cause you a lot of distress.
You might not know what to do if a doctor or medical professional misdiagnoses you. We’ll talk about that right now.
How Often Does This Happen?
Doctors misdiagnose about 12 million US patients yearly. That means this occurs pretty regularly. You stand a fairly good chance of a doctor misdiagnosing you.
The real issue is figuring out a doctor misdiagnosed you. Presumably, you’re not a medical professional yourself, so you might have to get a second opinion to verify a misdiagnosis.
Hire a Lawyer
If you determine someone misdiagnosed you, and it did not harm you at all, you don’t have to take any action. You can go to another doctor from that point forward if you’ve lost trust in your current one. You can also stay with that same doctor or medical professional since they didn’t actually harm you with their misjudgment.
Often, though, misdiagnosis leads to additional medical problems. A doctor might send you for surgery you don’t need. You may take medication you didn’t need that can lead to side effects and health deterioration. You might have to do a physical therapy program you didn’t need, and that harmed you even further.
You’ll probably want to at least consider hiring a lawyer and suing the doctor or medical professional who misdiagnosed you. The law usually considers a misdiagnosis medical malpractice. You will definitely have a potential lawsuit on your hands if you decide to move forward and sue.
How to Find the Right Lawyer
When you’re looking for a lawyer after a misdiagnosis, you might ask your friends and relatives if they can recommend anyone. You might also start looking around online to see if you can find an attorney nearby who can represent you. You’ll want to look at their reviews and check out their website.
You should make sure that the lawyer does malpractice cases. You don’t need a lawyer who only does criminal defense or some other law area that does not benefit you. You need someone with experience in this area representing you.
Meet with Them
You should then contact the lawyer to see if they will accept you as a client. Maybe they’re busy and can’t take on any new lawsuits.
If they agree to see you, you can go meet with them in person or perhaps talk to them on the phone. You might meet with them via Zoom or Skype as well.
You can tell them what happened to you and get their professional opinion as to whether you have a case or not. They will probably want to know about any evidence you can produce that indicates a misdiagnosis. They’ll also want to know about any pain and suffering you endured because of the incorrect medical opinion.
If they feel you have a case, you can hire them. You should make sure they operate on a contingency basis, though. That way, you only need to pay them from your winnings. If they fail to secure a judgment in your favor, you don’t pay them any money out of your own pocket.
Serve the Doctor with the Lawsuit
You’ll then inform the doctor or other medical professional who misdiagnosed you with legal papers telling them you’re suing them. You’ll go into the discovery phase, where your lawyer will reveal to the doctor’s legal counsel any evidence you might use at trial.
The doctor might decide to settle out of court if their lawyer feels that’s the better move, though. They might choose to offer you an amount they think will satisfy you. They’ll usually take this action if they feel they’ll lose the case if they go to trial.
The doctor will need to think about whether they met the expected medical care standard. The care standard means what the medical profession would expect you to receive that the circumstances dictated. If the doctor genuinely misdiagnosed you, then presumably, they did not meet the care standard for you, and they’re in the wrong.
If the doctor wants to fight the charge you’re leveling against them, they can go to trial. Then, you’ll need to prove the misdiagnosis, and that the doctor didn’t meet the care standard you should have expected as their patient.