When a patient presents to a doctor regarding complaints, it is important that the doctor take the time to listen to the patient.
This is important because doctors are trained to go through a method to help them get to the right diagnosis for a patient’s complaints.
The term for this process is called a differential diagnosis.
How Does Differential Diagnosis Work?
When a doctor does not take the time to listen to the patient and go through the important steps of a differential, the doctor is just guessing as to the patient’s diagnosis.
A differential diagnosis allows the doctor to go through a step by step analysis of a patient’s complaints with possible diagnoses and performing tests to either confirm or rule out a diagnosis.
With a differential diagnosis the most serious cause or illness is evaluated first. Then the next cause on the hierarchy of illnesses associated with the patient’s complaints is evaluated.
If done properly, this is done until the patient is diagnosed.
Not only does the doctor play an important role in this process, but so does the patient.
What Role Does The Patient Play In Their Diagnosis?
If a patient is not truthful with the doctor regarding his or her complaints, the doctor may not be able to get to the proper diagnosis.
With that said, a doctor who does not listen to his or her patient, fails to perform a differential diagnosis, and gets the patient’s diagnosis wrong to boot is looking at a strong argument that said doctor needlessly endangered the patient.
What If I Suspect A Misdiagnosis?
If you would like to speak with someone about your misdiagnosis, and how it caused your injury, this is what we invite you to do if your matter happened in Maryland.
Pick up the phone and give us a call.
We can be reached at 301-850-4832.
We answer Maryland medical malpractice questions like yours all the time and we would be glad to listen to your story.