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Article image Holding Doctors Accountable When Cancer Diagnosis Is Delayed

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Posted On Fri, Jan 25th 2013 Posted by : Staff

Cancer is an illness that affects millions of people each year, and although cancer has proven to be difficult to treat and cure, recent medical advancements have allowed people suffering from cancer to live longer, healthier lives. In addition, early detection of cancer has helped many sufferers to get the treatments they need faster, and this has also allowed for better prognoses. Unfortunately, some doctors end up delaying cancer diagnoses, and this can lead to further spread of the disease, and in some cases, death.

Why the Delay?

There are a number of reasons why a doctor may delay a cancer diagnosis, and not all of these reasons are due to negligence. In some cases, a doctor may delay a diagnosis while waiting for test results to come back or while waiting to see if a particular medication changes the patient's condition. In other cases, however, a doctor may be guilty of negligent delay when he or she has not fully looked over medical charts and records, or when he or she has improperly prescribed medications that have made the situation worse.

The Effects of a Delayed Cancer Diagnosis

The effects of a delayed cancer diagnosis can be severe. Many people who have their cancer diagnosed early stand a much better chance of beating the illness and avoiding more severe consequences, such as death. Delayed diagnoses allow the cancer to continue its growth and spread, and this can then lead to other parts of the body being affected by the disease.


In many cases, patients who have had delayed cancer diagnoses find that they would have faced a better survival rate had their doctors diagnosed the illness earlier. Unfortunately, friends and family of loved ones who have had delayed diagnoses also suffer due to the loss of loved ones to cancer as well as loss of income when a loved one can't work due to cancer.

What Can Be Done?

If you or a loved one have experienced a delayed cancer diagnosis, it's important to know that you may have the right to seek compensation. Compensation for a delayed diagnosis is often used to pay medical costs related to the cancer, but it can also be sought for pain and suffering, loss of income and more.


In order to seek compensation for a delayed cancer diagnosis, most people recommend partnering with a medical malpractice attorney in NYC or your local area for help. These types of attorneys specialize in investigating cases that involve medical practitioners who are guilty of medical malpractice, and they will be able to assist you in presenting your case in court if a lawsuit needs to be filed.

Keep in mind that cancer is a difficult disease to diagnosis and treat, and not all cases of delayed diagnosis fall under medical malpractice. As mentioned, there are some very legitimate reasons why a doctor may delay a diagnosis, and a medical malpractice attorney will be able to tell you whether you have grounds to seek compensation or not. If you are able to seek compensation for a delayed cancer diagnosis, it's also important to know that the process may be lengthy, and you may be called to testify before a judge. This means that you should gather as much evidence and documentation related to your cancer diagnosis as possible before meeting with your attorney so that you will both be prepared. 


Georgina Clatworthy is a freelance writer who was formerly editor of a respected legal blog and now posts on topics relating to health, law and consumer issues.  The Perecman Firm provide legal consultation to those looking for an attorney in NYC.  Since 1983 they have helped victims of accidents and negligence across New York City and always provide professional and compassionate representation in every case.


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