Delayed and misdiagnosis
In 2016, 11,563 women sadly died from breast cancer in the UK. There are almost 50,000 new cases of breast cancer diagnosed each year.
Sadly the nature of claims relating to cancer is that they occur when the diagnosis has been delayed, misdiagnosed, or the cancer missed altogether.
In 2018, an NHS error resulted in many women not being offered screening tests as they should have been. In some cases, this delay in screening meant that the women involved were not screened when they should have been and as a consequence problems were not picked up until much later when the affected women presented with symptoms. In certain circumstances it may be possible to seek compensation for the delay in diagnosis.
Here we explain the basis of breast cancer misdiagnosis claims, and claims based on the missed screenings.
Breast Cancer misdiagnosis claims
Breast cancer is well-known cancer affecting women and occasionally men. Diagnosis is usually straightforward and early presentation, diagnosis and treatment are essential to maximise the likelihood of a good outcome. Programmes of regular screening take place across the country to help detect and diagnose cases as quickly as possible.
Unfortunately the condition is occasionally not identified, diagnosed or treated as quickly as it should be and as a consequence the outcome is not as good as it could have been.
Medical errors during the diagnosis of breast cancer can include failure to:
- Refer the patient to a specialist
- Investigate symptoms properly
- Refer the patient for relevant investigatory treatment such as CT/MRI scans
- Perform a biopsy
If you believe your breast cancer was not detected quickly enough, or at all, or that you were not adequately or appropriately treated, then we may be able to help.
Speak to our medical negligence specialist today, in complete confidence, to find out if we can help you.
Breast Cancer screening claims
In 2018, as mentioned above, the UK Government confirmed that half a million women failed to receive invitations to a routine breast cancer screening as a consequence of computer error.
The error meant that, as of May 2018, 450,000 women aged 68-71 had not received an invitation to be screened since 2009.
The Department of Health also confirmed that a number of women may have died as a result of not having their cancer detected through screening and the subsequent delays in treatment. Of the 450,000 women affected, 309,000 are still alive and are now being contacted urgently by the NHS so that they can be screened.
What does this mean for you?
If you have received a diagnosis of breast cancer and believe that there are circumstances where the diagnosis has been found late, previously missed or misdiagnosed, you may be entitled to claim compensation.
If you are one of those who did not receive your invitation to screening letter, you should have now received a letter telling advising you of next steps to effect that screening.
If as a consequence of this delay you feel that you have not been diagnosed in time or your treatment has had to be more radical or complex as a result of the delay then contact our team at Browell Smith and Co on (0191) 250 3200
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