How to tell if you’ve been misdiagnosed

When you’re sick, you trust your doctor to listen to your symptoms and figure out what is wrong with you. After visiting their office, you follow the prescribed treatment and wait to feel better and heal. But sometimes, you can realise the prescribed treatment or diagnosis is wrong because your health gets worse or fails to improve. When the doctor misdiagnoses your condition or delays the correct diagnosis, the real issue is left untreated and can aggravate or trigger other issues. A delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosed condition can harm your wellbeing and health, so it’s crucial to identify the situation in time to handle it properly. 

As a patient, it’s crucial to know what your rights are when it comes to a misdiagnosis. In addition, it’s paramount to recognise the signs that might indicate the doctor neglected your case. 

Keep reading to find more!

You’re not getting better

After visiting the doctor and receiving treatment, your symptoms should improve. Your diagnosis might imply taking particular medications, engaging in physical therapy, or following a special diet. But you find that your health issues aren’t improving, and you feel the same or even worse. 

You feel discouraged and question if your doctor identified the diagnosis correctly or prescribed the proper treatment. If you feel insecure about your treatment or have other questions about your medical condition, remember that you’re the best person to advocate for your health. You can always ask your doctor to provide you with more information about your health or ask if you might have another condition other than the original one they identified. 

It’s crucial to speak up because they might’ve not correctly identified the problem and have to run extra tests to check if your symptoms point to another condition. You don’t want to have weeks or even months of discomfort and pain when the correct diagnosis can improve your symptoms in a couple of days. Also, your health issues must be correctly identified, especially if you have a serious condition that could get worse and put your life at risk if your doctor delays in prescribing the right treatment. 

Your symptoms overlap several health conditions

You most likely researched the symptoms before or after visiting the doctor to find out what might cause them. If you have symptoms that might match more than one medical issue, it’s important to ensure your doctor takes into consideration all possibilities when they diagnose it. Sometimes, a lack of experience causes the doctors to provide the most obvious diagnosis without checking other possibilities. If you think your symptoms might overlap with multiple conditions and don’t trust your doctor, ask for a second opinion to confirm the diagnosis and prescribed treatment. 

Your doctor didn’t get all information

When you visit a doctor to diagnose your health issue, provide them with all information about your symptoms to help them figure out what you’re suffering from. If your doctor seems in a hurry or doesn’t ask several questions and neglects to collect the necessary information diagnosing you, it could be a sign of medical negligence. 

The doctor-patient relationship should be built on respect and trust. Understandably you feel discouraged if you cannot get your point across to your physician. You might be trying to describe your health and that you’re feeling worse than ever, and they may cut you off in the middle of the sentence or correct you because they’ve already diagnosed you without having all the information. Or your doctor allowed you to describe all your symptoms, but they didn’t take your words into account. It’s nothing more frustrating than seeing that your doctor ignores you. Sometimes patients have similar symptoms but suffer from different health problems. Doctors shouldn’t assume they know the diagnosis only because you’re feeling similar to another patient.  

Your doctor doesn’t run the necessary exams or tests

Besides listening to what you have to say, the doctor should also undergo the necessary tests and exams to confirm the diagnosis. If you feel your doctor doesn’t use all the tools available to understand what you’re dealing with, they might fail to diagnose you properly. 

The physician should also take your medication into account because drugs can affect patients differently. Your medical condition and medication can interact with the drugs you’re already taking for another health issue. When medication is in the mix, it’s challenging to identify the problems and symptoms triggered by an interaction. Your physician should prescribe a treatment only after they check your complete medical history. 

Another doctor verifies the misdiagnosis

Because you didn’t feel better, you asked for a second opinion, and the specialist confirmed that you were misdiagnosed. If a second and third opinion verified the misdiagnosis, you could claim compensation because medical malpractice victims in the UK are entitled to ask for financial compensation for their suffering. When the second and third doctors take their time to check your medical history and perform tests to verify their misdiagnosis assumption and arrive at a diagnosis different from the original, contact a personal injury solicitor to assist you in the process. 

Are misdiagnosed conditions common?

The percentage of missed diagnoses and misdiagnoses is difficult to determine because not all patients report the situation. When the patient dies, some families might request an autopsy, but many don’t even consider the option of a misdiagnosis and accept the situation. Even if there are no actual statistics for how often misdiagnoses happen, it’s frightening even to consider you can be the victim of one. Misdiagnoses and delayed diagnoses can happen to anyone, and it’s crucial to identify their signs to be able to get help if you fall victim to medical negligence. If you continue to have symptoms after taking the medication your doctor prescribed, or have a hunch your diagnosis might not be correct, contact your physician and discuss the issues. And remember, you can always benefit from a personal injury solicitor to claim compensation for your suffering if you are the victim of medical negligence. 


Leave a Comment