Medical testing is crucial to the maintenance of our physical well-being. Whether we are undergoing diagnostic imaging to check on the health of internal organs or are evaluating the progress of treatment through blood work, we rely on the medical testing to guide our medical decisions. Far too often we assume that testing is infallible because it is based in science. We often overlook the possibility of lab errors, a doctor’s wrong diagnosis or reporting medical errors.
Sadly, as medical malpractice law firms will report, these errors are all too common .Lab errors can have a range of negative results that include (but are not limited to):
• Loss of possible employment (and wages) due to a misread drug test.
• Unnecessary follow-up testing or medical procedures as a result of a false positive.
• Delays in life-saving treatment due to misread results.
If you believe you have been the victim of a lab error that has resulted in lost wages, delayed treatment or unnecessary follow-up procedures, medical malpractice law firms in New Jersey have experienced legal teams designed to help you get the compensation you deserve. To learn more about lab errors and medical malpractice law, read on for an overview.
Lab Errors and Negligence
In order to qualify as medical malpractice and, therefore, be eligible for a legal claim, a lab error needs to be the result of negligence on the part of the lab in question or the medical providers ordering and interpreting the results.
What qualifies as negligence in lab testing? The most common examples are listed below. This list, while covering the most common errors, does not include all possible scenarios. Due to the complicated nature of laboratory testing and the unique details of each case, a medical malpractice law firm is vital to determining whether your medical provider is liable for a lab error.
Common Lab Errors Resulting from Negligence:
• Tests being improperly performed in the office or hospital — due either to carelessness or improperly trained staff
• Samples being contaminated — either in the hospital setting or en route to the testing facility
• A breakdown in effective communication between lab facilities and medical providers that results in errors in either testing or the reporting of results
• A doctors wrong diagnosis, resulting in either a failure to order needed follow-up procedures or a patient being advised to undergo unneeded exams, tests or surgical procedures
• A failure in reporting medical errors
• Incorrect interpretation of blood work, urine samples or imaging
• Incomplete samples being sent to the lab for testing
• Failure to order the proper amount of blood work or biopsy samples that results in either a wrong diagnosis or a need for more testing
If none of these examples is applicable to your case, that does not automatically mean you are not eligible to bring forth a claim. A medical malpractice attorney will advise you on how to best seek the compensation you are likely entitled to.
How To Handle A Lab Error
First and foremost, always seek a second opinion. Medical testing is never foolproof. Trust yourself. You know your body. If something seems amiss, you have the right and the obligation to ensure you are getting the best care possible. If you have received a diagnosis that requires additional medical procedures or threatens your livelihood, seek out another trusted medical practitioner for a second opinion.
If the same tests are performed and interpreted differently, you may be the victim of lab errors and reporting medical errors is your next step. New Jersey medical malpractice firms are trained in litigating lab errors in medical malpractice lawsuits. Contact a trusted attorney to review your case. An attorney will be able to help you sort through the facts of your case to decide whether you have a viable claim. If so, an attorney will take control of your case while you spend your energy getting the medical attention you need and bringing your body back to optimal health.