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Misreading Lab Results as Medical Negligence

Medical negligence comes in many forms. It can come in a botched medical procedure. It can also occur right at the initial treatment phases such as lab testing. Patients are sent for lab tests in order for treating physicians to evaluate critical information pertaining to patient diagnosis and evaluate the effectiveness of current treatments. When lab results are misread, patients can suffer extensive harm to their health and well being. Misreading lab results can often be the result of negligence on the part of a treating health care provider. If this is the case, the patient who suffered due to the negligence may be entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice claim.

How Does This Constitute as Medical Negligence?

Doctors employ the differential diagnosis method in order to arrive at a patient diagnosis. The differential diagnosis involves gathering information from the patient, the patient’s medical records, and lab tests in order to narrow down a potential diagnosis. Misreading lab results can easily lead to a misdiagnosis or a failure to diagnose. When the incorrect diagnosis is assigned to a patient, the patient may suffer through invasive and unnecessary medical treatment all while the actual, accurate medical condition is getting worse because of the failure to receive proper medical care. While the patient’s health continues to suffer, the effects of unnecessary and ineffective medical treatment can take a toll on the patient’s emotional well being. The financial burden of incurring medical bills while often needing to take time off of work can also be severe.

There are a wide variety of lab results that may be misread and result in harm to the patient. A patient may have submitted a blood, urine, or saliva sample for testing or undergone radiographic studies such as X-rays, MRI scans, and CT scans. These tests are used to determine things like:

  • Fractures
  • Internal inflammation
  • Blood cell counts
  • Hormone levels
  • Presence of tumors
  • Vital organ function

A misread lab result may have been the result of a number of errors committed by health care professionals all along the chain of custody. For instance, the lab technician may have misread the test because of something like a lack of experience. A doctor may also misread test results because he or she is inexperienced with a certain type of disease. In this case, the doctor should refer the patient to a specialist. Errors in misreading lab results can also be the result of communication errors.

If you have suffered due to a misread test result and misreading the test is deemed to be the result of medical negligence, you may be entitled to damages caused by medical malpractice. This means you can seek compensation for both economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages include things such as medical expenses, future medical expenses, and lost wages. Non-economic damages include things like your pain and suffering as well as your loss of qualify of life.

Medical Malpractice Attorney

Medical negligence comes in many forms and all of it can lead to extensive patient suffering. If you have been harmed due to negligence on behalf of a treating medical professional, Attorney Randall F. Rogers is here to fully pursue your right to full and fair compensation for the harm you have incurred. Contact us today.

Posted in: Medical Malpractice