As a doctor, you take your duty to care for your patients with the utmost seriousness. So, if you are accused of misdiagnosing or failing to diagnose a patient, you may have many questions. You may also be concerned about how the allegations may affect your medical license. If you feel your license may be threatened, it is important to be proactive and contact an experienced license defense attorney who can begin discussing your options with you. We are often able to help our clients resolve these types of matters without any public discipline to their license.
Commonly Missed or Delayed Diagnoses
Misdiagnosis, along with surgical errors, medication errors, and failure to obtain informed consent, can be considered gross negligence if it can be proved that a doctor caused injury to a patient by acting recklessly or carelessly while diagnosing or treating the patient. In the case of a misdiagnosis, this may occur if the patient’s symptoms, medical history, or test results are not properly analyzed or considered.
According to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the most commonly missed conditions for primary care doctors are pneumonia, decompensated congestive heart failure, acute renal failure, cancer in any form, and urinary tract infections. In a broader survey of physicians also conducted by JAMA, including general internists, specialists, and emergency physicians, commonly missed or delayed diagnoses included pulmonary embolism, drug reactions or overdose, lung cancer, colorectal cancer, acute coronary syndrome, breast cancer, and stroke.
According to the survey, errors most commonly occurred in the testing phase due to failures to order, report, and follow up on lab results. Other commonly cited sources of errors are clinician assessment errors, history taking, physical examination errors, and errors or delays with referrals or consultations.
Of course, patients may also be responsible for their own misdiagnosis by supplying the doctor with misleading or incomplete information. No matter what may have caused the complaint, it is important to have a strong, rapid response to the charges to help defend your license.
Trust a Chicago Attorney for Medical License Defense
If you have had a formal complaint filed against you or are facing a claim of negligence, contact our Illinois professional medical license defense lawyers at Williams & Nickl, LLC. Our attorneys are experienced in addressing licensing issues with the Illinois Medical Board and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR). Call us at 312-335-9470 to schedule a free one-hour consultation to discuss your case and learn about your options.