Young people in Illinois and across the U.S. run a higher risk of being diagnosed with later-stage colorectal cancer (also called colon cancer). The reason for this, according to the American Association for Cancer Research, is that people under the age of 50 with this disease tend to be misdiagnosed during their initial appointments.
Patients who suffer from rare diseases in Illinois may wait longer to get a correct diagnosis and proper treatment because the symptoms of these conditions often mimic signs and symptoms of more common illnesses. Failure to diagnose a condition can be a form of medical malpractice.
Erb-Duchenne Palsy, commonly referred to as "Erb's palsy" or brachial plexus birth palsy, is a medical condition that occurs to babies in 1 out of every 1,000 births. It's one type of obstetric brachial plexus injuries that affect Illinois infants, and it is characterized by paralysis, weakness and loss of motion in the arm and shoulder. Erb's palsy usually occurs during the birth process as a result of a birth injury.
Migraine sufferers in Illinois know all too well how headaches of this nature can affect their daily life. Because of the way nerve pathways and chemicals in the brain are affected by this condition, however, symptoms associated with migraines can mimic symptoms of other conditions. This unique characteristic of migraines sometimes leads to misdiagnoses. According to one study, only one in 20 patients are correctly diagnosed with migraines.
Electronic health records are increasingly used in medical practice in Illinois, but they may play a part in medical safety errors, especially errors in medication. A study published by Health Affairs found that more than 50 percent of pediatric medical errors were linked to the functionality of EHR systems. The studied involved more than 9000 safety reports from people who were patients from 2012 to 2017. Records from three separate healthcare companies were examined.
Patients depend on their doctors for many things, ranging from the basic, such as well-checks or influenza treatment, through broken bones and minor surgeries, and all the way to life-threatening conditions. At every stage there is a level of competence required by the doctor or the patient may suffer harm. In many cases, errors are made not as often in actively doing something wrong as a surgical error, for instance, but in a misdiagnosis of observed symptoms.
Every year in the U.S., an estimated 12 million adult outpatients are the victims of diagnostic errors. A study published by Health Affairs has explored the patient-physician interactions that might contribute to these errors. It should be of interest to Illinois residents who have been the victims of medical malpractice.
Illinois readers likely can't imagine being put under anesthesia for back surgery and waking up to find out that one of their kidneys had been mistakenly removed. However, that's exactly what happened to a Floria woman, according to a recently filed administrative complaint.
Pharmacists are often the last line of defense when it comes to preventing possible medication mistakes that may adversely affect patients in Illinois. Yet dispensing errors could be responsible for just under 22 percent of medication oversights that may impact patients' health, according to results from one study. This doesn't mean pharmacists don't actively try to protect patients as much as possible. However, patients can be equally proactive when it comes to reducing pharmacy-related mistakes.
Doctors in Illinois and other parts of the United States typically make every effort to successfully treat patients. Even so, a survey involving nearly 7,000 hospital and clinical physicians suggests that many doctors in the U.S. are burnt out and more likely to make patient-related errors. The poll covered a wide range of issues that may affect doctor performance, including workplace safety and personal issues such as depression, fatigue and suicidal thoughts.