As previously discussed on our Oregon medical malpractice blog, misdiagnosed cancer poses a serious threat to patients. A failure to diagnose cancer can result in a delay of treatment. In many cases, this can be fatal. Readers of our blog may not be aware that bladder cancer is often deadly, as it has one of the highest reoccurrence rates among the various types of cancer.
The story of one cancer survivor highlights the ongoing problem concerning misdiagnosis of bladder cancer. For six months, the man's doctors assumed the blood in his urine was caused by a urinary tract infection or kidney stone. As the bleeding persisted, his doctor performed a cystoscopy. This procedure threads a tiny camera through to the bladder to examine it and look for associated problems. After this procedure, the man finally received a proper diagnosis - he suffered from an aggressive form of bladder cancer.
The man underwent several surgeries and months of chemotherapy. His doctors were forced to remove his bladder, prostate and part of his intestines. He will have to be monitored for reoccurrence of the cancer for the rest of his life. Nearly 50-80% of bladder cancer patients experience a return of their cancer. There were 73,000 new cases of bladder cancer diagnosed last year.
This story shows how easily a deadly cancer such as bladder cancer can be misdiagnosed. For victims that have suffered from a misdiagnosis or undiagnosed form of cancer, it may be possible to file a medical malpractice claim against the responsible parties. In many cases, damages for medical bills and pain and suffering are recoverable.
Source: ABC 10 News, "Bladder cancer gets little attention, research funding," Victoria Colliver, Feb. 5, 2013