Below are nine conditions that doctors commonly misdiagnose in Ohio and across the U.S. Someone who has been diagnosed with a serious condition, regardless of whether it's on this list or not, should consider getting a second or even third opinion.
First, doctors often mistake fibromyalgia for lupus, rheumatoid arthritis or another rheumatic disease. Celiac disease is second on the list with some 83% of people being either misdiagnosed or going undiagnosed. This autoimmune disease causes the body to attack the intestines as a reaction to eating gluten. Another autoimmune disease, multiple sclerosis, is on the list too, as patients may be treated instead for migraines or nerve damage.
Cancer is included with certain types being misdiagnosed 40% of the time. Depression was listed because doctors tend to treat its physical symptoms like headaches and fatigue without reference to the patient's moods and mental state. Doctors also misdiagnose Parkinson's disease because its symptoms, ranging from hand tremors to stiffness and unsteadiness, mimic other nervous system disorders.
Aortic dissection is frequently mistaken for heart disease; although, an X-ray or CT scan can clear matters up. Patients with an overactive or underactive thyroid are prone to misdiagnosis because of the wide range of symptoms they exhibit. Lastly, migraines are often misdiagnosed because they can be taken as part of another condition like depression.
Many misdiagnoses and medical errors occur because of negligence on the doctor's part. When this happens and the victim suffers from unnecessary treatments and a worsening of their actual condition, legal action may be warranted. A medical malpractice attorney could evaluate the case to see if it holds up and, if so, how much the victim may recover in damages. A reasonable settlement might be able to cover damages like past and future medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.