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One of the myriad goals of Breast Cancer Awareness Month is to raise awareness among women about the importance of early detection and prevention efforts, including self-exams, screening exams, development of healthy lifestyle habits and recognition of early warning signs.
This makes sense when you consider that statistics from the National Breast Cancer Foundation estimate that more than 220,000 women will be diagnosed with the disease and over 40,000 will die each year. Furthermore, these same statistics estimate that close to 2,150 men will be diagnosed with the disease and over 400 will die each year.
The good news in all this, however, is that when a diagnosis is made early enough, the chances of surviving breast cancer are typically very good, as the malignancy can be removed via minor surgery.
This doesn’t always happen, however, as a medical professional can misread the results of one of the diagnostic tests we discussed in our previous post (diagnostic mammogram, ultrasound, MRI etc.), perhaps misdiagnosing an otherwise cancerous lump as benign or failing to order a biopsy that would provide a definitive cancer diagnosis.
In either of these scenarios, the breast cancer diagnosis could be delayed until it’s simply too late for the patient. Alternatively, it could result in the patient having to undergo multiple rounds of physically taxing chemotherapy or radiation treatments, or perhaps even a severe mastectomy operation.
It’s imperative to understand that you can seek justice if a misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis of breast cancer has resulted in the loss of your loved one, or caused you to needlessly endure a painful treatment regimen or traumatic surgical procedure. A dedicated legal professional can explore the unique circumstances of your case to determine whether medical malpractice has occurred and, if so, outline how to hold the negligent parties accountable for their actions.
Please visit our page on breast cancer misdiagnoses to learn more.