Can you sue for a misdiagnosis?

Receiving a misdiagnosis is a form of medical negligence that can be as hurtful to our mental health as it can be to our physical health. If you’ve been given a misdiagnosis that underestimates the extent of your medical issues, you can be left feeling like you were never taken seriously nor properly heard.

With medical negligence and misdiagnosis being related, is there grounds to sue when you receive a wrong diagnosis from a medical professional?

Is misdiagnosis always medical negligence?

While there’s a separate argument for the point at which misdiagnosis is down to lack of care or attention, inexperience, or something else, misdiagnosis is generally a form of medical negligence. However, receiving a wrong diagnosis is not something that you can sue for in and of itself.

In order to have a feasible case for medical negligence via wrong diagnosis, you would need to prove that the misdiagnosis led to treatment—or lack thereof—that caused unnecessary suffering and worsening of your condition.

Additionally, it might be that a misdiagnosis led to injury as a result of treatment you wouldn’t have pursued with a correct diagnosis. This can also form the basis of a claim.

As mentioned before, a misdiagnosis on its own isn’t normally grounds for a case. Any of us could be misdiagnosed when seeking treatment but ultimately face a waste of time, not injury or exacerbated pain.

How can misdiagnosis lead to bigger problems?

When you’re misdiagnosed, you have a medical professional placing their expert opinion on your condition having one cause when, in actuality, the problem stems from another.

This can lead to:

  • Being prescribed medicine that won’t help or will be too strong.
  • Being referred for unnecessary surgery.
  • Wasting time with tests that won’t detect anything significant.
  • Neglecting to pursue any treatment at all due to your condition being downplayed.

Misdiagnosis is a such a problem when it occurs because of the trust we place in medical professionals who know vastly more about the body and health than we do. When we’re given a diagnosis, we typically have no reason to mistrust or argue with our doctor, so we’ll take on their recommended course of treatment.

However, human error is always present, and in some cases this can lead to serious conditions going undetected. Cancer misdiagnoses are particularly tragic as early detection makes all the difference, and the UK is behind with certain cancers in particular and diagnosing them early enough.

If your health has been adversely impacted by a misdiagnosis, contact Mark Reynolds Solicitors for a free initial consultation. We’ll get the facts and give you sound, expert legal advice to help guide you and your potential case forwards.

To make an enquiry today, contact us.