Take These Steps to Help Prevent Your Doctor From Misdiagnosing Your Medical Condition
Unfortunately, misdiagnosis of a medical condition is one of the most common ways doctors—even good ones—commit medical malpractice. Often it is caused by a doctor being too rushed because he is overscheduled. The toll on the patient can be enormous when his medical condition is untreated and he incurs expensive medical bills, needs to take time off work, and experiences pain and suffering. However, he may be entitled to compensation from the doctor who committed medical malpractice by misdiagnosing his problem.
Six Steps to Take to Help Get the Right Diagnosis
While misdiagnosis is often caused by a doctor’s carelessness, you can contribute to the problem if you are unable to tell the doctor of all of your symptoms or provide a complete medical history. Ways to help prevent a misdiagnosis include:
- Schedule your appointment early. You should try to schedule your doctor’s appointment early in the day to avoid him being overbooked or running late. If you think you will need additional time with the doctor, tell this to the staff member who is setting your appointment.
- Be prepared. Before your appointment, write a list of your symptoms and questions and prioritize them since your doctor’s time will be limited. If your doctor does not have a complete medical history or list of your medications, you should bring this with you too.
- Ask for a diagnosis. After telling the doctor your symptoms and having an exam, you should ask him how he plans to make a diagnosis and what tests he will order. Be certain you understand the next steps before your appointment is concluded.
- Get your test results. If you need further tests, especially for cancer or heart disease, find out when you will get the results and follow up with your doctor’s staff if you do not receive them. Be certain to ask for help interpreting the results if you do not understand them.
- Monitor your progress. If your doctor advises you that you should feel better with the treatment he provides and your symptoms remain or worsen, contact your doctor and schedule another appointment.
- Get a second opinion. If you have questions regarding your doctor’s diagnosis or treatment plan or your symptoms do not improve, you may want to get a second opinion from another doctor. This could also be helpful if you are suffering with a serious disease, such as heart disease or cancer, where there are a number of ways to treat the disorder.
Even if you take all these steps, your doctor could misdiagnose your medical problem. You do not want to miss the time period for bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Call me at 888.716.8021 today to schedule a FREE consultation to learn how I can assist you.