Belsky Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC A Personal Injury & Workers’ Compensation Law Firm

Some health conditions prone to misdiagnosis

Patients who are sick expect their doctors to make an accurate diagnosis and provide appropriate treatment without multiple office visits and repetitive tests. However, physicians in Maryland and across the country are not always able to make a quick diagnosis, and if they do, the diagnosis is sometimes incorrect.

Thyroid imbalance is one of the most misdiagnosed of all conditions. Every part of the body is affected by hormones from the thyroid, leading to a thyroid imbalance being misdiagnosed for a number of conditions. Lupus, an autoimmune disease, is often misdiagnosed as seborrheic dermatitis because of the skin rash caused by both conditions. Lyme disease has a variety of symptoms, including a rash, hives and joint pain. The uncertainty of symptoms can lead to misdiagnosis unless a specific blood test is performed.

Celiac disease causes an intolerance for gluten. Because of its vague and non-specific symptoms, some of which are not even associated with the gastrointestinal system, the disease is difficult to diagnose without a blood test. Fibromyalgia affects 6 million people, but many cases are misdiagnosed as mental illness. Doctors often prescribe over-the-counter pain medication for individuals with severe migraine headaches. However, proper treatment can occur only if the doctor determines what is causing the problem. Many migraines are caused by food allergies, which can be detected with diagnostic tests.

Some cases legitimately require a number of tests in order to arrive at a correct diagnosis. However, an individual who has been misdiagnosed and has thereafter seen a worsening of conditions may want to consult an attorney. If the attorney can determine that the misdiagnosis was the result of doctor negligence, it may be advisable to file a medical malpractice lawsuit seeking damages from the responsible party.

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