Failure to Diagnose Colon Cancer
The colon, also known as the large intestine, is one of the most common cancer locations. Colon cancer is often treatable, and many patients have good outcomes, but their prognosis generally depends on how far their cancer has progressed at the time of diagnosis. In other words, patients who are not diagnosed until their cancer has reached later stages often suffer serious health issues and, in many instances, lose their lives to the disease. There are multiple ways to screen for illnesses affecting the bowel, and physicians that neglect to take the measures necessary to diagnose colon cancer should be held accountable for the harm their patients suffer as a result. If you were impacted by a doctor’s failure to diagnose colon cancer, it is prudent to speak to a lawyer regarding your rights. At Arfaa Law Group, our capable Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys take pride in helping people hurt by medical negligence fight for just results. If you hire us, we will assist you in seeking any damages recoverable.Diagnosing Colon Cancer
Colon cancer occurs when malignant tumors grow in the large intestine. Typically, symptoms of colon cancer do not appear until the disease has progressed to a later stage. However, there are ways doctors can diagnose colon cancer before symptoms appear. For example, colonoscopies, which are tests that allow doctors to look at the colon and identify and biopsy any concerning areas, are regularly administered to people who are of a certain age or have specific risk factors for colon cancer. If a physician delays ordering a colonoscopy or does not perform it correctly, a patient’s colon cancer may go undiagnosed. Similarly, if a doctor fails to observe concerning lab results or address a patient’s gastrointestinal symptoms, it can lead to the unfettered growth of colon cancer.Recovering Damages for a Doctor’s Failure to Diagnose Colon Cancer
A doctor’s failure to diagnose colon cancer may cause a patient to suffer significant physical, financial, and emotional harm. Many patients who are harmed by such incompetence seek to recover compensation for their losses in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Typically, a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case will allege a claim of medical negligence against the defendant.
Therefore, the plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty to treat the patient in a manner that aligned with the applicable standard of care, which is the care that a reasonable healthcare provider who practices in the same specialty would render in the same situation. The plaintiff must then establish that the defendant departed from the standard. In most cases, the plaintiff will have to retain a medical expert who has experience in the same practice area as the defendant to explain the standard of care to the judge or jury and provide testimony establishing that the defendant’s behavior is considered a breach of the standard.
Finally, the plaintiff must show that the defendant’s deviation from the standard proximately caused the plaintiff’s harm, which usually requires expert testimony as well. In the context of a failure to diagnose colon cancer, this means that the plaintiff has to prove that the defendant failed to provide a timely and appropriate diagnosis, which caused adverse health effects and other losses. A plaintiff that proves a defendant’s liability may be awarded compensation for the cost of any necessary medical treatment, out of pocket expenses, lost wages, and compensation for the emotional trauma, suffering, and pain endured due to the defendant’s carelessness.Speak to an Attorney in Baltimore
Colon cancer has affected the lives of many people throughout the Baltimore area, and when it is allowed to progress due to a doctor’s failure to provide a patient with a timely and accurate diagnosis, it can lead to devastating consequences. If you were hurt by a physician’s negligent failure to diagnose colon cancer, it is in your best interest to talk to a lawyer about your rights. The knowledgeable attorneys of Arfaa Law Group can advise you of your potential claims and develop persuasive arguments in favor of your recovery of compensation. We have an office in Baltimore, where we regularly represent parties in medical malpractice cases. You can reach us through our online form or at (410) 889-1850 to set up a meeting.