Q: I'm located in Medford Oregon. A spot on my hand was misdiagnosed as "sun damage", when in fact, it was cancer.
I recently had the excision on my hand to remove it. This would not have been necessary if the doctor would have actually looked at the hand and did some testing. Just glancing at it and determining it was sun damage was negligent, since he knew I was on blood pressure pills which are known to increase skin cancer risks.
A: I am very sorry for your experience. I know it can be frustrating to go through an experience that was difficult and/or could have been prevented. Medical Malpractice cases are tough because they almost always involve a serious injury and/or loss. Plus, in order to have a claim against a medical provider, there has be an qualified expert who can testify that the healthcare professional acted below the standard of care in the same/similar community as Medford. In short, would a healthcare expert claim that it was unreasonable for the doctor to make the mistake? It is not enough for a non-expert to assume the doctor should have performed certain tests, or follow a protocol given perceived knowledge of medication and its known propensity to cause cancer. You need an expert to say so. Then, if you can establish the doctor was negligent--in terms of these claims, negligence is only if the doctor's conduct was outside the standard of care--then, you need to prove the outcome would have been better if the doctor got the diagnosis correct. So, if the end result was to have the same excision on your hand to remove it, then there are likely no significant damages to warrant a lawsuit. If, however, there was a better remedy that you lost out on due to delay or things became much worse due to a delay in treatment, then you can sue for those damages. You need to speak with an experienced attorney right away if you want to sue a doctor, and you need to be prepared to obtain an expert review of the case. I wish you the best in all your future endeavors and hope that you are doing well now.
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