New York residents may have some concern about the the alarming rate of medical misdiagnoses that have been occurring around the country. A recent report identified diagnostic errors as a blind spot in U.S. medicine that has been life-altering for a countless number of people. Researchers claim that, on average, everyone experiences at least a delayed or incorrect diagnosis during their lifetime. According to the Institute of Medicine, improvement is absolutely necessary, since diagnostic errors have gone unnoticed for far too long.

Many physicians have called the report a serious wake-up call. Perhaps the most notorious incident recently involving such a medical error was a Liberian man who came to a Dallas emergency room in 2014 and who was then misdiagnosed with sinusitis, instead of the deadly Ebola virus he was carrying. The man returned to the Dallas medical center two days later and subsequently died.

In many cases, the existence or severity of the misdiagnosis can go undetected for a significant amount of time, as long as weeks, months or even years. The error could be attributed to a delayed diagnosis involving appendicitis, a virus, colon cancer or some other serious medical condition. The Sept. 22 report states that diagnostic errors have not been apart of the standard medical reporting being used by hospitals in the United States. Conservative estimates project that 5 percent of the adults seeking outpatient medical care end up getting misdiagnosed.

Patients who have been subject to a misdiagnosis or a delayed diagnosis will often see their conditions worsen, requiring additional and lengthy medical care and treatment. A person who is in this situation may want to discuss the available legal options with a medical malpractice attorney.


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