Accurately identifying certain diseases can be a challenge even for modern medical professionals. It is helpful for Oregon residents to understand the common reasons for misdiagnosis and what they should do if they are treated for the wrong conditions. A misdiagnosis can have serious health consequences and lead to unnecessary procedures, expenses and complications. While a great deal of research is being done to decrease the rates of misdiagnosis, many diseases are still commonly misdiagnosed.
Unfortunately for patients and doctors, many diseases share common symptoms and traits that make them difficult to differentiate. This is especially true of diseases that are difficult to diagnose with blood tests and not caused by an identifiable virus or bacteria. Autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus tend to be more difficult to diagnose. Disorders like fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome have very non-specific symptoms like pain and tired feelings that do little to differentiate them from dozens of other common and uncommon illnesses.
Certain conditions like Lyme disease may have symptoms commonly associated with colds or the flu. Patients may not even realize that they have a serious problem until the disease progresses to a late stage. It is common for such diseases to be misdiagnosed if the patient sees the doctor at an earlier stage.
A patient may want to file a malpractice lawsuit if they were misdiagnosed and that misdiagnosis caused them serious harm or injury. This could happen in a variety of ways. For example, a failure to diagnose may cause a condition to become worse due to improper or ineffective treatment. The patient may also incur unnecessary expenses for procedures resulting from the misdiagnosis. If a person believes they were misdiagnosed, an attorney may be able to help them collect the proper evidence and file a lawsuit.