Delayed Diagnosis Of Pulmonary Embolism
Pulmonary embolisms (PE) are extremely common and can be lethal. A competent doctor should be able to quickly identify and treat a PE. A PE occurs when a blood clot comes loose and travels through the bloodstream, eventually settling and obstructing blood flow to or from the lungs. This type of blood clot can block the exchange of gases necessary for survival.
Pulmonary Embolism Is Common In All Age Groups
Any time a person has been immobilized for a period of time, there can be a risk for a pulmonary embolism. Unfortunately, we have seen cases where someone was diagnosed with anxiety because no one looked for a pulmonary embolism. There are many common warning signs of a pulmonary embolism.
Symptoms Of Pulmonary Embolism
Several symptoms typically lead to a PE diagnosis. They include a sudden shortness of breath, rapid breathing, chest pain or tightness, a bad cough, coughing up blood, swelling, leg pain, dizziness and sometimes loss of consciousness, all of which can lead to death. The most common cause of PE is deep vein thrombosis (DVT), in which a blood clot blocks a deep vein, often in the arm or leg. Sometimes cancer treatments cause pulmonary embolisms or DVTs. Other causes, trauma or being immobilized after surgery, pregnancy, obesity or recent air travel.
Doctors Must Be On Guard For Dangerous Pulmonary Embolisms
If doctors have even a suspicion that a PE has occurred, they can conduct a range of simple blood tests, lung screenings or other scans. Sadly, misdiagnosis is all too common, and pulmonary embolisms often go untreated. People are often discharged from the hospital with one or many of the symptoms associated with a pulmonary embolism, and the results of such misdiagnosis are serious and even fatal.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a pulmonary embolism and you were not properly screened for DVT or were discharged from the hospital after presenting with any of the above symptoms, you should to consult with a medical malpractice lawyer today to see if you have a case.
Get Your Free Medical Malpractice Case Evaluation
The Pittsburgh, PA, area medical malpractice attorneys of Richards & Richards LLP offer free, no-obligation initial consultations in a range for medical malpractice issues. Please contact our lawyers at 412-261-2620 as soon as possible. If you cannot make it to our Pittsburgh, PA, or Warrendale, PA, offices, our attorneys can meet with you at your home or hospital.