Have you, your child, or your loved one been harmed because of a cancer misdiagnosis in Mobile, AL?
If a doctor or hospital failed to diagnose your cancer, gave you a wrong diagnosis, or botched a cancer diagnosis, you may be entitled to financial compensation for medical malpractice or medical negligence.
Patients who fail to receive the care they need are victims, and medical care providers may be held accountable through the legal system. Contact the Mobile cancer misdiagnosis attorneys at Lattof & Lattof, P.C., for a free consultation to learn about your legal rights and options for pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Even if you are unsure if you have a case, we can obtain your medical records and charts and have an expert physician review your potential case. If we represent you, we will build a fact-based argument and find every opportunity to maximize the value of your claim. Under our contingency fee agreement, we are only paid if we recover money for you.
How Will Lattof & Lattof, P.C. Help Me If My Cancer Was Misdiagnosed?
Our Alabama personal injury attorneys are familiar with the aggressive strategies that insurance companies and defense lawyers use in medical malpractice cases, and we have an extensive network of resources to help you recover the maximum compensation you are entitled to.
We will protect your legal rights following a misdiagnosis by:
- Offering sound legal advice and guidance
- Preserving evidence and documenting your case
- Hiring expert witnesses to review your charts
- Negotiating compensation in a settlement or preparing your case for trial.
Cases involving misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis are heavily defended, and complicated litigation. At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., our Mobile medical malpractice attorneys have more than 65 years of experience representing injury and malpractice victims in Alabama. We are a family-run law firm with a national reputation for results and advocacy. Our case results are a testament to our knowledge, skills, and abilities.
What is Cancer Misdiagnosis?
Cancer, a disease in which abnormal cells divide uncontrollably and destroy body tissue, is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Cancer misdiagnosis can take numerous forms of medical negligence and medical malpractice, including:
- Failure to diagnose
- Medical record errors
- Chemotherapy administration errors
- Delayed diagnosis.
According to the American Cancer Society, in 2020, there will be an estimated 1.8 million new cases of cancer diagnosed and more than 606,000 cancer deaths in the United States. Tragically, thousands of people will be misdiagnosed.
Getting accurate statistics about medical misdiagnosis is challenging partly because doctors are reluctant to admit their mistakes. Negligence of a medical professional can take numerous forms, including:
- The physician mixes up test results with another patient’s test results
- The physician fails to order the necessary or appropriate imaging tests to accurately diagnose cancer
- The physician does not properly evaluate or examine the patient, including reviewing the patient’s family history
- The physician fails to refer the patient to an oncologist or other medical specialist.
Some types of cancer, like pancreatic cancer, have higher misdiagnosis rates because symptoms are frequently confused with other conditions. The lawyers at Lattof & Lattof, P.C., hire world-class expert medical witnesses to provide testimony on how the doctor should have diagnosed cancer.
Representing Cancer Misdiagnosis Victims in Alabama
If your doctor or medical provider misdiagnosed or failed to diagnose your cancer, call us to see if we may be able to help. You may be entitled to damages in a lawsuit for failure to diagnose:
- Anal cancer
- Bladder cancer
- Bone cancer
- Brain tumors
- Breast cancer
- Cervical cancer
- Colon cancer
- Lung cancer
- Ovarian cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Skin cancer
- Testicular cancer
- Thyroid cancer
- Uterine cancer
- Any other type of cancer.
Because cancer is progressive, early diagnosis is critical. The American Cancer Society encourages people to get regular check-ups and cancer screening tests because early detection saves lives.
According to the WHO, the most common cancer types (breast cancer, cervical cancer, oral cancer, and colorectal cancer) are largely curable if detected and treated early. The need to diagnose cancer early makes a misdiagnosis possibly deadly.
What is Cancer Misdiagnosis – and How Much is a Lawsuit Worth?
In August 2020, Cosmopolitan UK magazine ran an article about a woman who visited three different doctors in late 2009 and early 2010 who dismissed her symptoms of abnormal bleeding and pain. By the time she was finally diagnosed, her cancer had spread. Despite a radical hysterectomy and aggressive chemotherapy, she died less than 18 months after her diagnosis.
In court, two of the general practitioners who Sophie had visited were found to be medically negligent. Sadly, stories like Sophie’s are not uncommon.
The vast majority of medical negligence cancer misdiagnosis lawsuits settle outside of court, for confidential amounts that are never disclosed publicly. However, over the years, numerous juries around the country have awarded verdicts in cancer misdiagnosis lawsuits, including:
- A jury in Polk County, Iowa, awarded $12.5 million to a man who underwent debilitating prostate gland removal surgery, only to learn he did not have cancer. He had been misdiagnosed after a pathologist mixed up patient slides.
- A jury in Indianapolis awarded $14 million to a woman whose cancerous tumor went undetected in a CT scan. A doctor issued a report finding no masses, despite scan images showing a mass indicating rectal cancer.
- A jury in Jacksonville, Florida, awarded $2.7 million to a woman whose cancer-free left breast was removed due to a cancer misdiagnosis.
- A jury in Pittsburgh awarded $5.7 million to the husband of a woman who died from liver cancer after a physician failed to diagnose cancer that showed up on a CT scan.
- A Las Vegas jury awarded $2.5 million to the family of a woman who died of colon and rectal cancer afters her doctors repeatedly told her she was suffering from hemorrhoids.
- A South Carolina jury awarded $6.9 million after doctors incorrectly diagnosed a malignant breast tumor as benign. Her cancer advanced without treatment, resulting in a terminal diagnosis.
Although every case is different, with unique circumstances and factors, cancer misdiagnosis verdicts illustrate how seriously juries take a misdiagnosis. If you have questions about how much your potential cancer misdiagnosis case may be worth, talk to our Mobile personal injury attorneys.
Damages Available in a Mobile, AL Cancer Misdiagnosis Case
Damages available in an Alabama medical malpractice claim may include:
- Present and future medical expenses
- Cancer treatments
- Lost earnings
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress, mental anguish, and more.
If a cancer misdiagnosis results in a loved one’s death, a wrongful death claim can pursue financial restitution for funeral costs and loss of consortium. Factors determining compensation will include:
- The impact that the cancer or misdiagnosis has on the victim’s life
- The length of time it will take the victim to recover from their injury or illness
- The cost of the medical care needed to aid the victim’s recovery
- The amount of time the victim will spend away from work as a result of their injury or illness.
Compensation available in a medical negligence or medical malpractice claim can be substantial. Having our skilled Mobile medical malpractice lawyers in your corner can help you maximize your recovery. Give us a call to arrange a free initial case evaluation today to learn more.
Statute of Limitations for Missed Cancer Diagnosis Cases in Alabama
A statute of limitations is a period of time that restricts how much time someone has to file a claim for damages. Like many states, Alabama has a separate statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims. You have two years from the date the alleged negligence or malpractice was committed to file a lawsuit in the state’s court.
Those who fail to file within the time period will lose their right to pursue compensation. If the patient is a minor, they have more time to bring a medical malpractice claim. Their two-year statutory window starts on their 19th birthday.
Do not delay in speaking with an attorney about your legal rights. Contact us today to discuss your failure to diagnose cancer case.
Elements of a Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuit
Cancer misdiagnosis lawsuits follow the general rules of medical malpractice lawsuits, which place the burden of proof on the plaintiff. Code of Alabama Section 6-5-548 states that a plaintiff has the burden of proving by substantial evidence (generally through a qualified expert witness) that the doctor or medical provider failed to exercise “reasonable care, skill, and diligence” as other similarly situated health care providers in the same line of practice in a like case would. There are four typical elements of a medical malpractice cancer misdiagnosis claim:
- The doctor, facility, or hospital owed you a duty of care
- The negligent actions of the doctor, facility, or hospital breached that duty of care
- The breach of duty caused harm to your health, including cancer to worsen
- Your cancer is as severe as you claim.
The plaintiff must also demonstrate a causal connection between the healthcare provider’s act or omission and the injury sustained by the plaintiff. If a doctor diagnoses a patient with cancer that he or she does not have, the patient may be able to recover damages for stress, anxiety, medical problems, and expenses due to unnecessary treatment.
Call Our Mobile Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawyers For a Free Case Evaluation
At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., we understand the pain of medical malpractice and have seen firsthand how doctors have caused harm and hurt individuals and families with cancer misdiagnoses. If you’ve been affected by a cancer misdiagnosis or any other injury, we offer a free consultation to review your Mobile cancer misdiagnosis case. Call to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced Mobile cancer misdiagnosis lawyers. We are available seven days a week to take your call.