Can Misdiagnosis of Neck Pain Lead To A Medical Malpractice Claim?

Medical malpractice is definitely one of the most common practice areas in the province of Ontario. The reasons are variable. However, it’s important to note that it is also amongst the most demanding fields because it requires a great deal of expertise and understanding of complex medical terminology.

Studies which go as far back as the 1998 indicate that about 66% of the population experience neck pain in their adulthood and 80% of the adults experience back pain. This is incredibly important because it outlines some of the most common reasons for medical attendance. However, in the majority of cases the doctors aren’t actually able to identify the particular physical condition or the illness which is causing the pain. It’s also important to note that in most of the cases this kind of pain is going to get resolved on its own.

This is the reason for which most of the physicians generally prescribe pain medication and instruct the patient to get back home and to return if the pain worsens. And, in fact, in the majority of cases this is going to be the end of it.

Failure of diagnostic assessment

However, it’s certainly possible that neck or back pain might be caused by something far more serious than just a common health problem. Failing to provide the patient with a right assessment and, therefore, failing to provide a differential diagnosis can actually lead to some incredible grave consequences. The differential diagnosis is especially important because it limits the possibilities to certain options and provides treatment plans which are crucial. It involves complex processes such as the process of elimination and afterwards determinations. There is a variety of conditions which are going to be excluded in order to include only the most probable causes of the pain.

Therefore, if the doctor misinterprets the symptoms he could issue a wrong treatment plan. This is not only going to not provide the patient with a solution, but it could just as well do more harm than good. And this is where the doctor is susceptible and open to personal injury claims.

All the damages that the patient has had to incur as a result of his malpractice are open for compensation. This includes both pecuniary and non-pecuniary. The patient can use basic documents and receipts as proof for the pecuniary damages. These include the expenses on medications, hospitalization and possible rehabilitation. However, the patient may also decide to file for non-pecuniary damages. The event might have left him with tremendous pain and suffering which is also subjected to compensation.

These damages are discretionary and they are assessed by the court in every single case in order to determine the exact amount of money which is going to justly compensate the victim.  It is best to discuss such cases in detail with the personal injury lawyer to ensure that the patient of medical malpractice is properly represented.