Cancer Medical Negligence Solicitors - Personal Injury Compensation lawyers
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complete the contact form or email us or use the helpline and an experienced cancer medical negligence solicitor will contact you by telephone to discuss your claim. Our cancer medical negligence solicitors operate the no win no fee scheme and you do not pay anything unless your claim is successful.
Our cancer medical negligence solicitors have offices situated in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Darwin, and Sydney.
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One of the most frequent types of case dealt with by medical negligence solicitors are cancer compensation claims. It is possible to effectively prevent or treat some types of this illness through early detection and quality of life, survival chances and life expectancy may be dramatically improved. Early diagnosis is usually paramount to successful treatment and if a health care professional has failed to diagnose the illness at an early stage then damages may be payable as a result of worsening of the illness. If you believe that your condition has worsened as a result of erroneous treatment, contact our cancer medical negligence solicitors for advice at no cost.
What is Medical Negligence
Medical negligence is used to describe any treatment, lack of treatment, or other departure from accepted standards of medical care, health care, or safety on the part of a health care provider which causes harm to a patient. Our cancer medical negligence solicitors are experts in this field of law and may be able to help you to identify errors in your treatment. Many different mistakes can lead to a delay in diagnosis which may deprive patients of the chance for a cure and these may include:
- Failing to perform an examination which would have identified an obvious tumour
- Failure to identify an obvious lump during examination
- Failure to arrange mammogram, pap smear, x-rays, ultrasound, CT scan or MRI scan
- Failure to properly evaluate biopsy or test results
- Mistaking a tumour for an infection or diagnosing the tumour as benign
- Failure to follow up on test results
- Failure to order future tests
- Failure to follow up with the patient
- Disregarding history of sharp pains or discharge
- Failure to recognize common symptoms
- Failure to test when a patient exhibits indicative symptoms
- Failure to have a biopsy performed when the physical examination results are abnormal
- Misinterpreting scans or laboratory results
- Failure to react quickly to findings
- Failure to recommend appropriate treatment options
- Failing to monitor patients with a family history of cancer
- Ignoring blood test, scan or biopsy results
- Losing records
Late Diagnosis of Cancer
Cancer is a disease where genetic mutations in certain cells change so that the cells grow out of control, forming a tumor or, in the case of blood borne cancers, a body of cells that are cancerous but aren't connected to one another. The end result is that the cancer cells use the nutrition and take up the space usually reserved for normal cells and the person eventually dies without treatment. Cancer is also known as a malignancy.
The causes of cancer include heredity, and environmental exposures, such as cigarette smoke, benzene and related organic compounds, aflatoxins (poisonous mushrooms and peanut plant toxins), viral illnesses, radiation illnesses, and exposure to sunlight.
The three most common cancers in men in the US include prostate cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer. In women, the three most common cancers include colon cancer, breast cancer and lung cancer. In other parts of the world, heredity and environmental exposures are different so that, for example, in Japan, gastric cancer is very common but rare in the US.
The symptoms are sometimes what tell whether or not you have cancer. If your doctor recognizes these symptoms are related to cancer and does the appropriate tests, you can be diagnosed with cancer at an early stage and can be cured of cancer. If there is a late diagnosis of cancer because the doctor fails to recognize the symptoms, the cancer can be diagnosed too late or not at all and you can die from the cancer or suffer a protracted course. Some cancers, arguably, have few or no symptoms until they are advanced. This is especially true of gallbladder and pancreatic cancer.
Most cancers have pain in the affected area, fatigue, chills and fever, loss of appetite and weight, malaise, and night sweats. The individual feels ill and may or may not feel a lump or any tumour.
The most common tests a doctor should do vary according to the type and location of the cancer. Commonly run tests include a CT scan or MRI scan of the affected area for use in locating the cancer, a biopsy of the tumour, blood testing for tumour markers, chest x-ray, complete blood count, and a bone marrow biopsy. The biopsy is the best way to define the type and grade of cancer. The grade of the cancer tells how aggressive the cancer is. It can determine whether or not you survive the cancer.
If you have been found to have cancer, you need to discuss the stage and grade of the cancer with the doctor so as to know the type of appropriate treatment. If there was a late diagnosis of cancer, there may be a crisis of faith with the doctor and you might wish for a referral to a cancer specialist who can manage your cancer with the utmost of care and planning. Knowing the risks and benefits can help you decide what the best treatment is for your type and grade of cancer.
The treatment of cancer depends on the stage, grade and type of cancer. Some cancers respond well to surgical excision alone because they are encapsulated and/or slow growing. Others need chemotherapy, genetic therapy or radiation so that extra cancer cells can be destroyed which couldn't be gotten rid of through surgery alone.
The type of treatment depends on whether or not the cancer is localized. Certain skin cancers are well localized and are able to be removed just by surgery. Certain breast cancers, when discovered early enough are able to be treated with surgery and possibly targeted (receptor) therapy after that. This type of treatment attacks hormonal receptors on the breast cancer and keep the cancer from growing.
The prognosis of your cancer depends on where the origin of the cancer is as well as the stage and grade of the cancer. If the doctor diagnoses the cancer early enough, many people have a chance of survival. If the cancer is a late diagnosis of cancer, the chances of survival go way down.
There are time limits for taking legal action in a medical negligence compensation claim and you should contact a solicitor as soon a possible after positive diagnosis. Time does not start running until a minor reaches the age of 18 years and time does not run against someone who is mentally incapacitated. Judges have a wide discretion to amend the time limits however this discretion is very rarely exercised. Time limits are a legal minefield and you should not hesitate to take professional, qualified advice from a cancer medical negligence solicitor. If the time limit expires then the ability to claim compensation may have been lost forever.
HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 633 634
The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here