Radiologists are medical specialists that evaluate and interpret diagnostic films, including sonograms, mammograms, MRIs, CT Scans, ultrasounds and x-rays. The large majority of hospital patients, regardless of their reason for admittance, depend on a radiologist’s interpretation of their films for proper diagnosis and treatment. Consequently, inexperience, error and misinterpretation can have tragic consequences, including severe personal injury and wrongful death.
A diagnostic error can delay appropriate treatment of the patient’s condition. For example, delayed diagnosis of cancer can result in the spread of the disease beyond the point in which medical intervention can help. The progression of a disease can result in more medical bills and pain and suffering for the patient and his or her loved ones. Such errors are especially likely in overworked and understaffed radiology departments, or when images of inferior quality are used for the diagnosis.
Some potential misinterpretations of sonograms, mammograms, MRIs, CT Scans, ultrasounds, and x-rays include:
- Failure to diagnose a fracture of the arm, wrist, leg, spine, hip or ribs
- Failure to diagnose the presence of cancer or tumors
- Failure to diagnose an ulcer
- Failure to diagnose intestinal perforations or internal bleeding
- Failure to diagnose organ perforations
- Failure to diagnose prenatal conditions
Surprisingly, despite medical advancement, claims for errors in radiology film interpretations are on the rise. Recovery for theses type of claims is often significant, because the injuries as the result of diagnostic error are potentially life-threatening. Many of the medical injuries resulting from radiology errors are financially, physically and emotionally exhausting. That’s why an experienced attorney is an invaluable resource for patients and loved ones in need.