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Why ovarian cancer is often misdiagnosed

Getting an early diagnosis is key for a lot of disease and health conditions. That's because the earlier you catch a disease or serious health condition, the sooner you can start potentially life-saving treatments that could prolong your life or lead to complete remission of a condition altogether.

Unfortunately, though, many diseases and serious health conditions have symptoms that can mimic other less-serious conditions. If a doctor isn't familiar with more serious conditions or does not push to investigate further, a serious disease or illness could go completely undetected, potentially even leading to the death of a patient. For patients living with ovarian cancer, misdiagnosis is an all-too-real scenario, but one that could potentially lead to compensation for a patient's family.

The reason why ovarian cancer is often missed is because many of its symptoms are the same as more benign conditions. For example, some of the most common symptoms are:

  • Bloating
  • Frequent urination
  • Abdominal pain
  • Trouble eating or getting the sensation of fullness too quickly

Unfortunately, many patients are passed off to other doctors when symptoms mimic more benign conditions, oftentimes leading to misdiagnoses or a significantly delayed diagnosis. For ovarian cancer patients, a missed or delayed diagnosis can be devastating as later stages of the cancer are more life threatening and more difficult to treat successfully.

Those who are new to our blog should know that a failure to properly diagnose and treat cancer can be grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit. This type of legal action holds doctors and hospitals accountable for not addressing a medical condition properly. It also seeks compensatory and possibly punitive damages for patients and families who have been affected by a missed or delayed diagnosis.

Filing a medical malpractice claim can be a challenging undertaking, though, if you don't have the right legal knowledge at your disposal. Thankfully, there are personal injury attorneys in the Upper Marlboro area, such as those here at Wilson & Parlett, who can help.

Sources: CBS Minnesota, "The High Difficulty Of Diagnosing Ovarian Cancer," Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield, Dec. 1, 2015

The American Cancer Society, "Signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer," Accessed Dec. 2, 2015

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