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Failure to Diagnose/Delayed Diagnosis

Failing to diagnose a disease or condition may be a result of medical malpractice. It is the responsibility of your doctor to use due care to make a proper diagnosis and to provide proper and appropriate testing and follow-up care. In certain situations, such as cancer, failing to diagnose or delay in diagnosis may greatly increase the chance of permanent damage and/or reduce the chance of survival or cure.

There are many factors that may lead to a doctor failing to diagnose. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Misinterpreted lab results
  • Misread x-rays
  • Lost or switched lab results
  • Failure to refer patient to a correct specialist
  • Procedure performed incorrectly or use of the incorrect procedure
  • Failure to take an appropriate or complete medical history or failure to recognize a patient's presenting symptoms
  • Inadequate differential diagnosis
  • Failure to send for appropriate testing


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