If you have suffered from a failure to diagnose cancer due to medical negligence, you may be able to file a cancer misdiagnosis claim for compensation.
Understanding Cancer Misdiagnosis
The most common reason cancer gets misdiagnosed is that it presents with similar clinical features to many other illnesses, particularly in the early stages. For example, early breast cancer symptoms are similar to those of fibrocystic breast disease or mastitis. Early symptoms of lung cancer resemble the symptoms of many other respiratory ailments including asthma, pleurisy, bronchitis, tuberculosis, and pneumonia. In its early stages, colorectal cancer symptoms are similar to those of haemorrhoids, inflammatory bowel disease, or ulcerative colitis.
However, this does not in any way excuse a cancer misdiagnosis because of medical negligence. Medical professionals are expected to use various diagnostic procedures to confirm or rule out possible life-threatening illnesses. If a GP does not have the resources to perform the necessary tests, they should send their patient to a specialist for more intensive investigations.
Sometimes, even when tests are carried out, human error or faulty laboratory equipment can result in incorrect results leading to a misdiagnosis. The subsequent delayed or incorrect treatment may cause the cancer to advance further. In extreme cases, the misdiagnosis may be discovered too late for any further treatment to be effective. In cases such as these, the patient may have a strong case to make a cancer misdiagnosis claim to be compensated for their suffering.
What To Do After A Cancer Misdiagnosis
The most important thing to do after a cancer misdiagnosis is to see an experienced oncologist for immediate treatment.
Doctors have a duty of care to patients. If your cancer symptoms have advanced because of a breach in this legal duty of care, you may be able to file a cancer misdiagnosis claim. Cancer misdiagnosis claims can be challenging to prove without expert medical and legal knowledge. If you think you have a claim, it is advisable to get in touch with a personal injury solicitor who has experience dealing with medical negligence claims and get expert legal advice as to what to do next.
Common Cancers That Are Misdiagnosed
Some of the more common cancers that are misdiagnosed for which you could claim compensation if it was due to medical negligence include:
- Breast cancer
- Lung cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Colorectal cancer
Making A Cancer Misdiagnosis Claim
Most personal injury and medical negligence solicitors today provide a free consultation where you can discuss making a cancer misdiagnosis claim.
Personal injury solicitors offer more than just legal advice and representation, however. If there is a case to be answered they can also help fund your claim on a No Win No Claim basis.
Our personal injury solicitors understand the mental, emotional, and financial consequences a cancer misdiagnosis can have. A No Win No Claim agreement is designed to offer financial relief to their clients who might already be dealing with mounting medical expenses, in addition to lost income and the trauma of a cancer misdiagnosis. According to the terms of a typical agreement, the solicitor/law firm will cover all the fees until the cancer misdiagnosis claim is closed. If your claim is unsuccessful, you would not pay anything. You would pay only after the claim is settled in your favour. With a No Win No Fee agreement, there should be absolutely no financial risk to you in filing a cancer misdiagnosis claim.
If you would like to find out more about making a cancer misdiagnosis claim on a No Win No Fee basis then please don’t hesitate in contacting us to speak with an experienced solicitor.
How Much Compensation For Cancer Misdiagnosis?
It’s important to note that there isn’t one set compensation amount that all victims of cancer misdiagnosis negligence would receive. When filing a cancer misdiagnosis claim, a solicitor will calculate how much compensation to claim taking into account both general damages and special damages.
General damages are basically awarded for loss of amenity, pain, and suffering. The amount awarded for general damages may vary depending on the severity of the consequences of the cancer misdiagnosis. How long the cancer went undiagnosed will also be taken into consideration. Your solicitor will research precedents and consult with other legal and medical experts to determine the maximum compensation due to you for your injuries.
Special damages are awarded based on actual expenses and financial losses you have incurred because of the cancer misdiagnosis. This includes loss of income and other work-related perks from being unable to attend to professional obligations. It also covers all travel expenses associated with the injuries, such as commuting to the hospital and back for ongoing treatments. Special damages also reimburse the cost of hiring home care, the cost of special equipment if necessary, and the cost of long term care.
Filing A Cancer Misdiagnosis Claim For Someone Else
The law makes provisions for someone who has died due to a cancer misdiagnosis. If your loved one died because of an inaccurate or delayed cancer diagnosis, it is possible to file a compensation claim on their behalf. There are certain restrictions, however. Only a parent, spouse, or child of the deceased may file a cancer misdiagnosis claim on their behalf.
There is a 3-year statute of limitations for filing a cancer misdiagnosis claim on behalf of a loved one. This means you must file the claim within three years from the date of their death. Claims filed after this three-year limit are usually not accepted.
If you think you are entitled to file a cancer misdiagnosis claim, whether for yourself or on behalf of a loved one, it is advisable to speak to a personal injury solicitor at the earliest. It takes time to put together all the evidence and build a fail-proof claim that will get you the maximum amount of compensation due to you.