A medical misdiagnosis is not malpractice until a serious illness or injury is linked to it. A patient in Georgia has to prove that the medical provider’s inaccurate diagnosis is the cause of a malpractice case.
Identifying a misdiagnosis
A misdiagnosis is a medical error that is fairly common in the medical field. However, it may or may not cause harm to a patient. The misdiagnosis of acne instead of cysts provides little harm, but misdiagnosing cancer leads to serious, life-threatening illnesses or injuries. Misdiagnosing psychological disorders is common because neurological disorders have symptoms that are similar to mental illnesses.
When to file a lawsuit
A patient who suspects being misdiagnosed has to consult a second or third opinion from another medical provider. A patient has to determine if an incorrect diagnosis was given by an under-experienced doctor. He or she has to find a more qualified doctor to make a correct diagnosis.
In one type of misdiagnosis, the patient consults the wrong specialist. For instance, a patient with headaches may have consulted a psychiatrist for advice instead of a neurologist. Overall, your lawsuit relies on your ability to find another provider who is qualified and belongs to the correct specialty.
Then, you have to prove that the misdiagnosis led to medical malpractice. Your failure to seek treatment for your health condition must have caused the worsening of your symptoms or the development of a new health problem.
A misdiagnosis generally leads to a medical malpractice lawsuit because the results are often serious and life-threatening. A misdiagnosis of cancer is one of the most common types of inaccurate diagnoses that are deadly yet preventable. Every misdiagnosed patient has to determine and prove that the doctor’s advice has directly caused his or her worsened illness.