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Study shows misdiagnosis a common reason for personal injury

Suffering from an illness, condition or injury in Maryland will understandably warrant a trip to the doctor or hospital to see what the problem is and how to go about treating it. Trusting medical professionals is ingrained in people from the time they are young. There is an expectation that those who are trained medical experts will know how to make an accurate diagnosis and give proper treatment. Unfortunately, medical errors are still a concern. They can cause a worsened condition, illness and death.

A new study indicates that there are certain issues that are more commonly misdiagnosed and cause personal injury and death to patients. If this has happened or a family believes it has happened, having legal assistance is crucial. The study from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine says that three-quarters of misdiagnoses that lead to serious damage to patients fall into three categories. Those three categories are cancers, infections and vascular events.

There could be as many as four million patients who suffer personal injury because of diagnostic mistakes each year. An accurate gauge of misdiagnosis and the number of people who are injured or die because of it is not known. In the study, more than 11,500 diagnostic mistakes were assessed. They occurred within 10 years. The most common problems for each category were lung cancer, sepsis for infections and strokes for vascular events. Nearly 86 percent were due to judgment mistakes when making a diagnosis.

The researchers say that most diagnostic errors happened when there was a bedside analysis and the need for clinical assessment. Solutions to the mistakes include using devices or imagery and ensuring the medical professionals are educated as much as possible when it comes to making a diagnosis. Around 50 percent of the damage was classified as "high-severity" leading to serious injury and permanent disability.

Medical professionals are trusted to make an accurate and timely diagnosis when a patient arrives and seeks treatment for symptoms. The correct diagnosis is often the difference between the person becoming sicker and dying or returning to full health. When a person believes he or she was subjected to a misdiagnosis or the family of a loved one who died thinks there was a mistake, having legal assistance is essential to investigate the case and determine what happened. Calling for a consultation with a law firm experienced in personal injury cases due to medical malpractice can help.

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