Bensalem, PA asked in Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury for Pennsylvania

Q: Misdiagnosis of psoriasis when it was skin cancer led to surgery on my scalp and significant hair loss.

The PA who treated me said I had psoriasis on my scalp and prescribed a steroid. No biopsy was done. It didn't clear up, and I went to a different practice for my next body check. That Dr. said it's not psoriasis, took a biopsy and found it to be squamous cell carcinoma. It had been growing peripherally for all that time and led to me needing extensive surgery on my scalp. Because of the extent of the area, I needed a plastic surgeon who took a graft from my groin area to put on my scalp. I now have significant hair loss requiring a hairpiece for the rest of my life. I notified the practice of the PA's misdiagnosis and what it led to, but received no response. I would like them to be held accountable for the misdiagnosis and compensate me in some way. Do I have a case?

2 Lawyer Answers

A: It depends on whether the PA’s fell below the standard of care in the PA’s area of practice.

One study found PAs in a dermatology practice are more likely to order skin biopsies than dermatologists and that PAs diagnose fewer melanomas in situ, suggesting the accuracy of PAs may be lower than that of dermatologists.

But all medical malpractice cases heavily depend upon the specific facts and circumstances of each case. You should consult a competent attorney with medical malpractice experience in or near the county where you saw the PA.

It would be helpful to bring your medical records from your annual dermatology wellness exams prior to the cancer, along with your medical records pertaining to this cancer, as they will need them in order to evaluate your case.

Joel Gary Selik
Joel Gary Selik
  • Medical Malpractice Lawyer
  • Las Vegas, NV

A: You have a potential case. Medical malpractice means that a doctor violated the standard of care. A bad outcome is not enough. Another doctor would be needed to evaluate what the doctors did.

Due to the nature of medical malpractice cases, the extent of your injuries may effect the viability of your case. Consult with experienced attorneys: Https://

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.