Those in Ohio concerned about being misdiagnosed by their doctor may be interested in a new study released by Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute in January 2020. The study focused on the seriousness of misdiagnosed conditions and what can be done to improve medicine across the United States.

The study estimated that between 40,000 and 80,000 people are hospitalized each year due to a misdiagnosis. An additional 80,000 to 160,000 people may experience serious harm to their physical health as a result of being misdiagnosed. Many of these individuals die each year as a result of misdiagnosis.

Researchers looked at over 11,000 cases of medical malpractice claims in the United States. The research shows that three conditions are most likely to be misdiagnosed, resulting in serious injury. These conditions, cancer, infections and vascular disease, made up the majority of cases in the study. These three conditions were then broken into the 15 most commonly misdiagnosed conditions. Stroke, lung cancer and sepsis topped the list. Researchers believe that improving teamwork among health care workers, utilizing technology for accurate diagnoses and improving wait time for specialists will help reduce medical errors.

The study listed clinical judgment failure as the top reason for patients being misdiagnosed. When a doctor doesn’t take the time to listen to the patient and perform the proper tests, the patient may be treated for the wrong condition. A misdiagnosed condition may lead to further medical injury, costly medical bills, time off of work or even death.

If a doctor was negligent when diagnosing a patient, he or she might be responsible for damages. A lawyer may be able to file a medical malpractice suit. For example, a patient in the emergency room who passed away after the doctor didn’t diagnose him or her on time might have lived if the proper tests were done. The family may decide to file a suit against the hospital or doctor for negligence.