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Why Doctors Purposely Misdiagnose Patients

Why Doctors Purposely Misdiagnose Patients - Wormington & BollingerA recent report by The Atlantic has uncovered a shocking revelation in the medical world – doctors misdiagnose many of their patients on purpose. At the center of the story is a Michigan doctor who hundreds of people are claiming falsely diagnosed them with epilepsy. Pediatric neurologist Yasser Awaad worked at Oakwood Healthcare in Dearborn, Michigan and is believed to have mistreated numerous patients.

The natural response to this is why? Why would Dr. Awaad diagnose a patient with a completely wrong condition, and do so knowingly?

What Are Prescription Errors?

In their lifetime, most people will be prescribed a drug at least once. This means that every single American is at risk of injury – or worse – simply by receiving a prescription. Pharmacists dispense medications to patients of all ages and conditions. They provide drugs that treat everything from minor illnesses to chronic diseases. While these individuals are trained professionals, when they give patients the wrong medication or improper dosage, it could harm or kill the person.

The Story

Unfortunately, money is the biggest answer. According to the victim’s lawyers, Awaad ordered as many electroencephalograms (EEG) tests as he could because it could increase his salary. Perhaps one of the most disturbing aspects of this story is the EEG test itself. If you’ve never had one performed before, let’s just say it isn’t an easy test. The patient is wrapped in bandages and has wires placed all over their head while the machine looks for abnormal activity in the brain. Following the procedure, patients are usually sleep-deprived and experience other side effects.

In June 2019, Awaad was taken to court after hundreds of former patients accused the doctor of intentionally reading their EEGs wrong to make incentives. Sadly, Awaad’s case is not abnormal in the current healthcare climate. Fraud is rampant, and more and more doctors are being accused of misdiagnosing patients, performing unnecessary operations, and prescribing superfluous medications.

Misdiagnosis And Medical Malpractice

When you go to the doctor, you are seeking their help and expertise. You expect any healthcare professional to take your case seriously and do everything they can to help treat your symptoms, not make them worse. But a growing number of doctors are being accused of not taking this duty of care seriously.

Misdiagnosis is a serious problem that we are currently facing. A growing number of people are leaving their doctors’ offices frustrated, confused, and even scared by what they’ve been told. Here are a few red flags that you may have been misdiagnosed by your doctor:

  • Your gut tells you that you’ve received the wrong diagnosis
  • Your doctor isn’t listening to you and your concerns
  • Your doctor’s solution is to prescribe additional medications
  • Your condition isn’t improving
  • Any attempt at talking to your doctor leaves you more confused and without answers

There are also many different ways doctors misdiagnose conditions, including:

  • Understaffing
  • Inadequate training
  • Doctors are short on time, leading to errors in reading a patient’s symptoms
  • Doctors order the wrong diagnostic tests
  • Doctors fail to follow up with their patients

In the story mentioned above, Dr. Awaad has denied the accusations and claims there were “many reasons” why he felt it was appropriate to perform an EEG. A jury found him guilty, and he must pay one of the plaintiffs $2.8 million in damages.

If you believe you’ve been the victim of a misdiagnosis, please contact the medical malpractice lawyers at Wormington & Bollinger today.