Prostate cancer misdiagnosis lawsuits are filed when a physician misses a prostate cancer diagnosis, uses outdated tools or procedures, or fails to order timely screenings. Patients have limited, often costly treatment options as a result. A prostate cancer misdiagnosis lawsuit may offset those costs.
Prostate cancer is the second most common type of cancer in men, after skin cancer. Unfortunately, many cases of prostate cancer are misdiagnosed each year, resulting in a delayed diagnosis or a failure to diagnose the disease altogether. Furthermore, a study published in the British Journal of Cancer showed that half of all prostate cancers were underdiagnosed, meaning that many men could have a worse case of prostate cancer than initially believed.Should your prostate cancer have been caught earlier? See if you are eligible to file a lawsuit
Why People File Prostate Cancer Lawsuits
A cancer diagnosis is difficult enough when it’s caught early, but even more challenging for victims and their families when delayed, potentially preventing certain treatment options. As a result, patients and their families may seek a lawsuit to gain financial compensation for wrongful or missed treatment of their cancer.
Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis
With a prostate cancer misdiagnosis, symptoms may be dismissed altogether, or they may be wrongly diagnosed as another condition. Oftentimes, prostate cancer is missed during the diagnostic process or dismissed before reaching the biopsy stage, which is crucial to ruling out cancer.
Steps to Diagnosing Prostate Cancer
- Physical exam and analysis of medical history
- Recognition of potential risk factors
- Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test screening
- Transrectal ultrasound (TRUS)
- Prostate Biopsy
There are many reasons that a patient may be misdiagnosed, such as a PSA blood test not being performed, symptoms being pinned to a less-serious illness without testing for cancer, abnormalities going undetected on imaging scans or even biopsy samples being switched. More than 1 million prostate biopsies are taken in the United States, each year, and 1.28% of them face switching and contamination (provenance errors), which equates to about 12,800 patient biopsies.
If a patient presents symptoms reflective of prostate cancer and any of these diagnostic steps are not done, the patient may be eligible to file a cancer misdiagnosis lawsuit. If similar diagnostic steps are performed, but with misdiagnosis as another cancer, delaying treatments, patients may also be able to seek compensation. The most common cancer misdiagnosis of prostate cancer is bladder cancer.
Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis Claims
Medical malpractice claims filed within the past decade have been against urologists and primary care physicians (PCPs), as they are responsible for diagnosing the disease.
When patients present symptoms, they first see a doctor at their primary care facility for treatment and a potential diagnosis. The PCP can conduct testing, but if cancer is suspected, patients are referred to a specialist, which is urologist in the case of prostate cancer. When cases are filed against the primary care facility, it’s typically because records were lost, findings weren’t relayed to the patient, recommendations for further treatment weren’t made or a referral wasn’t given.
Medical malpractice lawsuits against urologists can be due to a variety of factors, such as misinterpretation of testing, not taking action after a concerning PSA, mistaking the disease as another type of cancer, failing to conduct a biopsy, or dismissing the case after a normal test result despite several other abnormal tests in the patient’s past.
Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis Settlements and Verdicts
Medical malpractice cases often end up being filed as wrongful death lawsuits. Unfortunately, a cancer misdiagnosis can have deadly consequences as patients lose their chance at early detection and are unable to withstand life-saving treatments. Some patients may file a medical malpractice lawsuits themselves, of if they have died from their lung cancer, their loved ones may be eligible to file.
$1.93 Million Medical Malpractice Verdict
One notable verdict involves Gunter, a United States Marine veteran, who sought care from the Marion VA Medical Center. After a concerning results from a PSA test, Gunter had a series of followup PSA tests that were concerning. Despite a 45% change that Gunter had prostate cancer, concerns were not relayed to the patient and a followup appointment was not stressed and was also not scheduled for him, as directed. As a result, Gunter’s diagnosis with metastatic prostate cancer was severely delayed. He sought compensation for disfigurement, pain and suffering, loss of a normal life and shortened life expectancy, being awarded $1.93 million.
Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuit FAQs
Get answers to some of the most common questions about prostate cancer misdiagnosis lawsuits below.
Do I Qualify to File a Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuit?
In the case of a prostate cancer misdiagnosis, patients may qualify if they were originally diagnosed with something else, they weren’t given a proper referral to a specialist to definitely diagnose cancer, test results weren’t relayed, or other situations resulting in a delayed diagnosis. Patients are even more likely to be eligible if the delay in diagnosis allowed their cancer to spread and reach stages 3 or 4, challenging their chance at proper treatment and survival.
If you or a loved one has been misdiagnosed or experienced a delayed prostate cancer diagnosis, you should seek out professional legal advice from an experienced medical malpractice lawyer.
How Much Will I Receive from a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?
Patients and their loved ones have received thousands to millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts as a result of pain, suffering, wrongful death and other factors after a misdiagnosis of prostate cancer. Ultimately, whether or not the case results in a settlement or verdict, and in what amount, will depend on the individual case. The best way to find answers to questions regarding your specific case is to seek a consultation with a reputable law firm.
How Much Does a Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuit Cost?
In most cases, law firms will take on the initial burden of paying for the lawsuit, meaning that clients will not need to pay anything up front. The lawyers will only get paid if they help you receive a settlement, verdict, or some other form of compensation as part of your legal claim.
When discussing your case during your free consultation, your lawyer will be able to explain to you how contingency payment works. If you have any questions, you should ask them up front, to ensure that you understand what amounts will be paid out of the compensation you receive.Talk to a Misdiagnosis Lawyer Now
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