There are three main ways a doctor might make a misdiagnosis:
- by failing to diagnose a health problem entirely
- by diagnosing the wrong condition (misdiagnosis) or
- by making the correct diagnosis but delaying it due to other errors.
These can happen in any hospital department, including A&E, and can cause serious damage and injury.
Common mistakes include:
- Not examining a patient properly or noting all their symptoms
- Not taking a patient’s history into account
- Not arranging necessary investigations, x-rays or tests
- Not carrying out the right investigations, x-rays or tests
- Not interpreting investigations properly
- Not spotting illnesses such as meningitis
- Making a late or delayed diagnosis of a serious medical condition, such as cancer
- Failing to identify, diagnose and/or adequately treat a fracture
- Dismissing repeat visits to your GP which should have suggested a more serious underlying condition
- Not ensuring a patient is seen by a senior member of staff
- Making administrative errors
Hospital Negligence & Treatment Errors - Even if a correct diagnosis has been made it is possible for mistakes to occur during treatment. Some common failures can include
- Not giving the correct treatment
- Not operating when necessary
- Not noticing when patients get worse
- Not appropriately monitoring a patient’s condition and taking relevant action
- Poor hospital care leading to illness, bed/pressure sores, dehydration and malnutrition
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