Dealing With A Delayed Diagnosis Malpractice Case

We all trust our doctors to the fullest, as we must. They become real-life saviours to all of us when we, or our loved ones, are suffering from a life-threatening disease. The act of talking to a doctor at the right moment can change the course of our life. Unfortunately, the story does not have a happy ending to all of us. Statistics tell us that most Americans will experience at least one instance of delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis in their lifetime. This statistic, though vague, is quite scary. We rely on the medical professionals to treat us to the best of their capabilities and trust their judgement more than anything else. 

Before we tell you more about how a delayed diagnosis affects you and what you can do about it, let us see what delayed diagnosis is. 

What is delayed diagnosis?

Delayed diagnosis often confused with misdiagnosis is when your doctor arrives at the right diagnosis or course of treatment after a considerable delay. That can be due to a result of complication in the illness, wrong lab results, or negligence from the attending physician. It could also be due to administrative errors in medical documents from the healthcare staff. Delayed diagnosis, however, often starts with a misdiagnosis with the doctor suggesting a different course of treatment than required leading to further complications for the patient. 

When does delayed diagnosis amount to negligence or medical malpractice?

Though delayed diagnosis is one of the leading causes for malpractice cases in the United States of America, there is a lot of confusion as to when delayed diagnosis becomes a case of medical negligence or medical malpractice. Often the symptoms and test results for more than one illness can be similar leading to a case of mistaken identity and delayed diagnosis eventually. In such cases, one has to prove beyond any doubt that there was negligence from the doctors’ end. 

Delayed diagnosis becomes a case of medical negligence only after you have established :

  1. Presence of the doctor-patient relationship
  2. Deviation from the standard of care/ medical negligence on doctors’/hospitals’ end 
  3. Irreparable harm for the patient due to delayed diagnosis

Proving your delayed diagnosis case

Proving that delayed diagnosis harmed you or your loved one can be tricky. But it is not impossible. To check if you have a case, you can follow some basic steps :

  1. Obtaining all your medical records including medical charts, radiology reports, surgical notes, prescriptions, and discharge summaries from the healthcare provider. 
  2. Consulting a medical expert for a second opinion. That is an important step to prove your malpractice-related case in court, you have to prove that the doctor deviated from the standard of care and did not follow the right process.
  3. Consulting a medical malpractice attorney with the facts for a legal analysis of your documents.
  4. If you are an attorney with a medical malpractice case on your hand, you can contact a medical summary firm for document analysis and expert opinion

How can we help?

The role of medical summary firms such as The Medsum is quite significant in cases of delayed diagnosis. To prove deviation from the standard of care, the medical records and charts have to be thoroughly analyzed to decipher the action taken from doctors’ end. 


You will also need a chronological summary to show the increasing symptoms and the course of treatment adopted by the doctor. That includes the timeline for the tests ordered, any new medications started, and surgeries scheduled, etc. Medical summary firms can also prepare opinions comparing standard prescribed care vs the one adopted by the hospital. We can also connect you to a medical expert for the actual court proceedings.


Talk to us today to see how we make a difference in your medical malpractice case. We help you win!