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Emergency Departments Misdiagnose Atypical Presentations Far Too Often 

 Posted on March 07, 2023 in Medical Malpractice

rockford medical malpractice lawyerIt is not difficult to imagine why a missed diagnosis or a delayed diagnosis could cost a patient dearly. When injuries are acute and illnesses are aggressive, a diagnostic error can cost a patient valuable time. Under the most extreme circumstances, an error made in an operating room, at the scene of an accident, or in an emergency department could cost a patient their life.

One of the primary reasons that diagnostic errors occur is that not every condition presents in the exact same way in every patient. For example, it has only been over the last 20 years or so that the medical community and the wider public have come to understand that heart attack symptoms tend to manifest very differently in women than they do in men.

Dismissing someone’s atypical manifestations of a serious condition can result in catastrophic consequences. Recently, it was revealed just how often misinterpretation of atypical symptoms in E.R. patients causes irreversible harm.

One Out of Every 18 E.R. Patients Is Misdiagnosed

According to a study released in December by the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, diagnostic errors occur in U.S. emergency departments approximately 7.4 million times each year. This means that one out of every 18 patients who are treated in an emergency room is misdiagnosed.

Of these 7.4 million diagnostic errors, over 2 million result in preventable harm, in addition to roughly 360,000 that result in death or disabling harm. It is also estimated that 40 percent of all of the serious harm caused by E.R. diagnostic errors can be traced to atypical presentations of five specific, potentially life-threatening conditions, including stroke, spinal cord injuries, and aortic aneurysms.

Contact a Knowledgeable Rockford County Medical Malpractice Lawyer Today to Learn More

It is not always easy to know how consequential a diagnostic error will prove to be until a patient starts experiencing complications or progression of a missed underlying condition. With that said, if you suspect that a diagnostic error has caused you or a loved one harm, it is time to explore your legal options with the assistance of a reputable attorney.

You do not need to wait to speak with the experienced team of Rockford, IL medical malpractice lawyers at Mannarino & Brasfield, A Division of KJS. We offer free legal consultations to anyone who is interested in learning more about their rights and options.

To set up a consultation, please call us at 815-215-7561 or submit a contact form on our website. As your situation may be time sensitive for a variety of reasons, it is important to act quickly. We look forward to speaking with you.

Source:

https://effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/products/diagnostic-errors-emergency/research#field_report_title_1

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