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How do a misdiagnosis and a missed diagnosis differ? 

On Behalf of | Oct 11, 2022 | Medical Malpractice

You recently saw your doctor because you have a strange new pain you wanted to look into. Your doctor, without hesitation, said it was just stress and sent you about your day. Seems odd that you didn’t have any tests done – you might have been misdiagnosed or miss diagnosed – but what’s the difference?

Misdiagnoses and missed diagnoses sound nearly alike but there are a few differences to watch for that might indicate if you experienced medical malpractice. Here’s what you should know

How to know if your medical care was subpar

If you heard someone say misdiagnoses or missed diagnoses, you likely would think you were hearing the same thing. The two terms both affect how your medical condition is treated – or failure to be treated.

A misdiagnosis occurs when a patient is examined, diagnosed and treated for a medical condition they don’t have because their symptoms were similar to some other medical condition. For example, a patient may have daily migraines – after some tests, their doctor said it’s caused by high blood pressure, but the patient is actually suffering from a concussion. 

A missed diagnosis, however, may be caused by neglect. A doctor may cause a missed diagnosis because they don’t treat a patient’s complaints seriously, leading to the patient suffering from their actions. For example, a doctor may not believe that a patient is feeling lightheaded and won’t conduct any tests. Because of this, the patient could suffer serious medical conditions that were potentially fatal. 

There should be some clarity between a misdiagnosis and a missed diagnosis, so that the next time you see your doctor, you won’t be a victim of medical malpractice

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