Prostate cancer is a significant health concern, being the leading cancer diagnosis and the second-most-common cause of cancer-related death among men in the United States. However, advancements in screening tests and therapies have led to a decline in mortality and morbidity associated with this disease since the 1990s. It's important to note that while approximately 75 percent of newly identified prostate cancers are found in men older than 65, younger men can also develop prostate cancer. In fact, there has been a notable increase in cancer incidence among men between the ages of 50 and 59 in recent decades.
Unfortunately, there are instances where medical professionals may fail to conduct the appropriate tests or dismiss symptoms of cancer, particularly in cases of prostate cancer. This failure to diagnose and provide timely treatment can be considered a form of medical malpractice.
What is a Prostate and Prostate Cancer?
The prostate is a gland that plays a role in the male reproductive system. It is located between the bladder and the anus and is surrounded by nerves that control the erection of the penis. Problems with the prostate can lead to various dysfunctions, including difficulties with urination.
Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer often does not produce noticeable symptoms, particularly in its early stages. However, in some cases, individuals may experience certain symptoms that could indicate the presence of prostate cancer. These symptoms include:
- Increased frequency of urination
- Urgency to urinate
- Difficulty in urination
- Presence of blood in the urine (hematuria)
Damages Available to Victims of Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis
In a case of misdiagnosis of prostate cancer, there are several types of damages that you may be able to sue for. It's important to consult with a qualified attorney who specializes in medical malpractice to assess the specific details of your case and determine the appropriate damages to pursue. Here are some common types of damages that may be sought in a misdiagnosis of prostate cancer:
- Medical Expenses: You can seek compensation for the costs incurred due to the misdiagnosis, such as medical consultations, diagnostic tests, treatments, medications, surgeries, hospital stays, rehabilitation, and any future medical expenses related to the misdiagnosis.
- Pain and Suffering: This category includes physical and emotional pain, as well as the suffering endured as a result of the misdiagnosis and any subsequent treatments or complications. It aims to compensate you for the negative impact on your quality of life, both past and future.
- Loss of Income and Earning Capacity: If the misdiagnosis caused you to miss work or led to a long-term disability, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, benefits, bonuses, and other income-related losses. Additionally, if your ability to earn a living has been impaired due to the misdiagnosis, you can seek damages for the diminished earning capacity.
- Rehabilitation and Therapy: If you require rehabilitation services or ongoing therapy to manage the physical or psychological effects of the misdiagnosis, you may be able to seek compensation for the associated costs.
- Emotional Distress: The misdiagnosis of cancer can cause significant emotional distress, including anxiety, depression, fear, and loss of enjoyment of life. Compensation may be sought for the psychological impact of the misdiagnosis and its consequences.
- Loss of Consortium: If the misdiagnosis has affected your relationship with your spouse or partner, leading to a loss of companionship, support, or intimacy, your spouse or partner may be able to seek damages for the loss of consortium.
- Punitive Damages: In cases where the misdiagnosis resulted from gross negligence, willful misconduct, or intentional harm on the part of the healthcare provider, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the responsible party and deter similar behavior in the future.
It's important to note that the availability and extent of damages can vary based on jurisdiction and the specific circumstances of the case. Consulting with an experienced medical malpractice attorney will help ensure that you understand your rights and have a strong legal strategy to pursue the appropriate damages.
We Can Help
At O’Connor, Parsons, Lane & Noble, we are well versed on the particular circumstances unique to failure to diagnose Prostate Cancer. The important piece for you to remember is that you—as a patient or representative of a loved one—are entitled to a very specific standard of care by your physician and related medical personnel.
We urge you to consult with us as soon as you suspect you have been subject to medical malpractice. We don’t expect you to come to us knowing all the answers—that’s our job. We are continually educating ourselves and keeping up to date with the most current legal changes and news so that we may better serve your needs. Our malpractice attorneys have the experience, expertise and breadth of knowledge to pursue failure to diagnose cancer cases of merit.
O’Connor, Parsons, Lane & Noble is one of the most-established and best-known medical malpractice law firms in New Jersey. The initial consultation is free, confidential, and you are under no obligation. Contact us online or call at 1-908-251-9368 or 1-800-586-5817