Home > Legal > Man Pursues $2,750,000 Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Against Doctor For Delaying His Cancer Diagnosis

Man Pursues $2,750,000 Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Against Doctor For Delaying His Cancer Diagnosis

Prostate cancer strikes African-American men earlier and often more aggressively from the rest of the population. Men of African-American descent are at greater risk of having prostate cancer at a younger age. Because of this, doctors typically acknowledge that physicians ought to go over prostate cancer screening wiith males of African-American descent once the patient turns forty-five. By commencing earlier with African-American men screening ought to lead to the detection of the cancer at an earlier and possibly curable stage. When physicians do not follow the guidelines for cancer screening andthe individual is subsequently diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer that physician might be liable for medical malpractice.
Aside from standard screening for cancer, doctors also should really be able to recognize and follow up when a patient has complaints suggestive of possible cancer. Doctors also should either perform screening testing requested by a patient or make it clear to the individual that they will not perform the test and that the patient will need to see another doctor if he still wishes to be screened. For example, in a documented lawsuit the patient was an African-American man, age 41, who requested to be tested for prostate cancer. The patient requested for the screening test after participating in a campaign to improve awareness concerning the risk middle-aged African-American men face when it comes to prostate cancer.
There are two tests generally used to screen for prostate cancer. They are both done since they look for distinct indicators. The first is a physical examination of the prostate gland. The other is a blood test that quantifies the PSA level in the patient's blood stream. In keeping with the patient's request the physician conducted a physical examination of the prostate. The doctor did not discover any palpable abnormalities on the prostate. The doctor then ordered blood tests. The tests, however, did not include a PSA test. The physician did not tell the patient that no PSA test had been done. The patient was seen again by the same physician 2 years later. This time the physician failed to conduct a physical examination of the prostate and just as before did not order a PSA test.
What this physician did was to give the patient a false sense of security. By doing the digital examination of the prostate and ordering blood tests the physician left the patient with the perception that the physician had conducted a full screening. In situations like these, most patients would probably feel that a PSA test was actually ordered along with the rest of the blood tests which has bee ordered on the second visit. Either way, though, he clearly was justified in believing he had gone through a full screening in the earlier visit.
Advance to later that same year. The patient returns to the same medical practice but is seen by a different doctor. This physician both completed a digital examination and order a PSA test. The result - the patient had stage 4 prostate cancer which had spread to the bone. Due to the fact that the male patient was now approaching 45 and under the guidelines the doctor would normally only at this time have at least had a conversation about screening. In this instance, however, the individual had specifically asked to be screened earlier and the actions of the doctor had led him to expect he had been.
The patient filed a lawsuit against the physician who had failed to get the PSA testing. The law firm that represented the patient published that it took the case to trail where a jury awarded the plaintiff $2,750,000. The defense appealed and the parties settled for a confidential amount as the appeals was pending. Although the amount of the settlement was confidential it was less than the amount of the verdict. This is not an unusual way for both parties to reduce the risk of an adverse ruling by the Appeals Court. In this case the Appeals Court subsequently denied the appeal.
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