A misdiagnosis is not something anybody wants to experience. Unfortunately, one of the most common and detrimental medical mistakes is misdiagnosis. Women tend to be misdiagnosed more often than men when it comes to certain health conditions. Here, the Philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys at the Weitz Firm want to look at the most commonly misdiagnosed conditions in women.
Women are misdiagnosed on a regular basis
When working to determine why women are misdiagnosed so often, it is important to understand that, until recently, medical research was conducted almost exclusively on white men. The results of this research were then applied to women and men of all races and ethnicities. The truth is that what works for a man’s body will not necessarily work for a woman’s body.
The most common conditions that are most likely to be misdiagnosed in women include the following:
Heart disease. One of the main reasons that women with heart disease are misdiagnosed more often than males is because women do not display the “textbook” heart disease and heart attack symptoms that men do. Another issue is that many of the tests that are still in standard use to detect heart disease are not as good at discerning heart disease in women.
Autoimmune diseases. Diagnosing autoimmune diseases is difficult regardless of gender. Studies show that it takes approximately five doctors and nearly four years for an accurate autoimmune diagnosis. Unfortunately, many of the symptoms of autoimmune disease are similar to symptoms of other health issues, prompting many physicians to take a “wait-and-see” approach to treatment.
Endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome. These two conditions often have symptoms that are similar to other conditions and are commonly written off or improperly treated. For example, women with endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome are often diagnosed with IBS or depression.
Sleep apnea. Until recently, it was assumed that men suffered from sleep apnea much more commonly than women. However, studies from the 1990s show that more women suffer from this condition more often than previously realized. However, this is commonly misdiagnosed in women and can lead to an increased risk of high blood pressure, stroke, and heart failure.
Breast and ovarian cancer. Even with all of the awareness surrounding regular screenings in advanced imagery tests, some studies show that as many as 31% of all cases of breast cancer are misdiagnosed. This is often because early-stage breast cancer is hard to detect and could be misidentified as another medical condition.
Let us get to work on your behalf
If you or somebody you care about has been injured due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may be entitled to significant compensation. At the Weitz Firm, we are dedicated to helping victims secure the compensation they deserve, which can include
Coverage of all medical expenses related to the medical mistake
Lost income and benefits if a victim cannot work while they recover
Loss of personal enjoyment damages
Pain and suffering damages
Punitive damages against the healthcare provider or the agency responsible