Filing A Lawsuit For A Cancer Misdiagnosis


When you put yourself in the hands of medical professionals, you have some basic expectations. You rely on their expertise to determine what’s wrong with you. From there, you look for a treatment plan in hopes of a cure. Unfortunately, a cancer misdiagnosis can cause a delay in your recovery – or even result in you needing to undergo unnecessary treatment.

Believe it or not, misdiagnosed cancer can go a couple of ways. One news report shares the story of a man ready to undergo surgery to remove his prostate after a diagnosis of prostate cancer.

The patient was already on the operating table when the pathology department called. Apparently, the biopsy slides showed there was no cancer. The surgery halted immediately.

All things considered, falsely diagnosed cancer might not sound less benign (pun intended) than other medical malpractice claims. However, what if this gentleman’s prostate was unnecessarily removed?  What about the fear and anxiety the misdiagnosis created?

Take it a step further. Just about everyone knows the toll chemotherapy and radiation treatments take on the body. Imagine the nausea, the vomiting, the hair loss – all because of a wrongfully diagnosed cancer. If you find yourself in such a situation, it would be reasonable to consider filing a lawsuit alleging medical malpractice.


In the meantime, a cancer misdiagnosis can go the other way as well. The most prevalent concern represents a delay in diagnosis. No doubt your mind has already painted a picture of cancer’s invasion throughout your body. Seemingly, time matters when it comes to such a progressive disease.

You may have some firsthand knowledge of a delay in cancer diagnosis. Truth be told, breast cancer leads the list of misdiagnosed cancers. You remember letting out a big sigh of relief when the doctor informed you the lump on your breast was a cyst or a fibroid tumor. Only it wasn’t.

Despite going through diagnostic testing, such as mammograms and even biopsies, your cancer may be misdiagnosed as something less critical. If this happens to you, you should consider speaking to an attorney with experience in medical malpractice claims. An expert opinion may determine what the delay in treatment means to the outcome of your health.

Breast cancer isn’t the only one that initially gets misdiagnosed. Doctors may attribute your symptoms to other diseases instead of these types of cancer:

  • Lymphoma
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Throat Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Melanomas
  • Leukemia
  • Lung Cancer
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Sarcoma
  • Colorectal Cancer

Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop at just a misdiagnosis.  For example, medical professionals could miss your cancer diagnosis entirely. One medical journal article states that 90% of missed lung cancer cases related to medical imaging issues. More specifically, the missed diagnosis most often represents an observer error. That said, there may also be technical issues with the equipment or patient positioning.


Your doctor and other medical providers are held to certain standards when it comes to providing treatment.  An experienced medical malpractice attorney will retain your records and submit them to an expert for evaluation.

The expert culls through all available information to search for a finding of medical negligence. This would mean that your treating doctors failed to exercise reasonable and ordinary care in treating you. If so, there must also be evidence that you suffered damages as a result.

Keep in mind that there are time limits involved in filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Do not delay in meeting with an attorney to discuss your legal options.

Contact Us

The attorneys and staff of Fellerman & Ciarimboli recognize the sensitive nature of a cancer misdiagnosis.  We can only imagine the impact this could have on your physical and mental wellbeing. Let us look into your concerns and provide you with experienced legal advice.  We look forward to meeting with you.

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