Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis Stories – When Could You Make A Medical Negligence Claim?

This guide will look at some breast cancer misdiagnosis case studies and will explain how a misdiagnosis could occur as a result of negligence. We will address the duty of care that medical professionals owe to their patients and the potential impact of a misdiagnosis of cancer.

breast cancer misdiagnosis

Breast cancer misdiagnosis claims guide

Furthermore, this guide will explain some of the factors that go into determining how much medical negligence compensation you could be awarded. We will also address the advantages you could experience when working with a No Win No Fee lawyer from our panel.

If a medical professional misdiagnosed your breast cancer and caused you avoidable harm, please contact our team today. Someone from our team could give you an assessment of whether you have a valid claim. They could connect you with a lawyer from our panel if your case is valid.

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A Guide To Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis

According to the NHS, breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK. One in eight women will experience breast cancer in their lifetime.

Cancer is a kind of condition that can get worse over time. This means that it can be advantageous to diagnose the condition as early as possible, as it will ensure you get the treatment you need promptly. If your condition is misdiagnosed as a result of medical negligence, and this causes you harm that could have been avoided, then you may be able to claim.

What Do We Mean By Medical Negligence?

When medical practitioners treat patients, they owe them a duty of care. This means that they have to provide care that meets a minimum standard. It’s classed as medical negligence when a practitioner provides their patient with medical care below the expected standard and the patient experiences unnecessary or avoidable harm as a result.

You cannot automatically claim just because medical care has harmed you, as sometimes harm is a necessary part of providing medical care. For example, in the case of cancer, you might need chemotherapy or radiotherapy to treat your condition. These treatments can make you ill, weak and tired and lower your immune system.

Speak with a member of our team today to see if you could be connected with one of the medical negligence solicitors from our panel.

Breast Cancer Symptoms And Diagnosis

Below are some examples of symptoms that breast cancer could cause:

  • A breast lump (however, not all breast lumps are cancerous).
  • A change in the breast’s shape
  • Discharge which contains blood
  • A change in the appearance of the nipple. For example, it may be sunken into the breast, or the breast appears dimpled.
  • A rash appears around the nipple.

Diagnosing Breast Cancers

Patients who believe they have breast cancer should take their concerns to their GP. The doctor may then refer the patient to a specialist hospital for further testing. This testing could include a mammogram assessment or a biopsy, which is where a small part of the lump is taken out and tested.

A misdiagnosis of breast cancer could occur if:

  • The doctor fails to send a patient for the required test
  • The test (for example, the mammogram) is performed incorrectly
  • The results of a diagnostic test are mixed up with those of another patient

A misdiagnosis could mean that you’re given the wrong medication or treatment for the condition you have. Alternatively, if you’re told you have cancer when you don’t, then this could mean you’re given unnecessary treatment or undergo unnecessary surgery.

Speak with a member of our team today for guidance on how a breast cancer misdiagnosis could have been caused by medical negligence. They can also offer you guidance on how to prove a medical negligence claim.

Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis Stories

We will now look at two breast cancer misdiagnosis stories.

In 2016, a patient was wrongly diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer after she experienced difficulty breastfeeding her son. Consequently, she underwent chemotherapy and reconstructive surgery before her hospital realised a mistake had been made.

University Hospital of North Midlands NHS Trust admitted to misreporting a biopsy and blamed the cancer misdiagnosis on “human error”.

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In 2014, a patient found a lump in her breast and went to her GP. The GP misdiagnosed the lump as a swollen lymph gland without referring her further.

In February 2016, the patient was admitted to the hospital with chest pains and coughing up blood. She then received a diagnosis of breast cancer and underwent 6 cycles of chemotherapy but died in November 2016.

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What Happens When Cancer is Misdiagnosed?

If breast cancer is misdiagnosed, the patient will not get the treatment they need, so the cancer can spread and worsen over time.

After a cancer misdiagnosis, you may need more intensive treatment than you otherwise would have. For example, a kind of cancer that may initially just have needed a lumpectomy and a short course of chemotherapy may need more intensive chemotherapy and a full mastectomy.

It could also spread to another part of the body where it is more difficult to treat. For example, breast cancer may spread to the bones, liver, lungs and brain.

In some cases, the condition might progress to a point where it can no longer be treated at all. This could result in the patient’s wrongful death. Their surviving relatives may be able to claim if this was caused by negligence.

Speak with a member of our team today for guidance on how a breast cancer misdiagnosis could happen as a result of a breach of duty of care.

What Could Be Awarded For Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis

If your breast cancer misdiagnosis claim succeeds, you will receive general damages which account for the unnecessary pain and suffering the misdiagnosis resulted in.

You may be curious to know how much medical negligence compensation you could be awarded for your injuries. To help illustrate this, we have included the table below. The contents are based on the guidelines from the Judicial College, which solicitors use to help them value general damages, alongside other evidence like the results of a medical assessment. However, you should only use this as a guide and not a guarantee.

Compensation Brackets Table

Harm Severity Notes Guideline Compensation Bracket
Brain Damage Very Severe Some ability to follow basic commands. Little or no meaningful communication with environment. £282,010 to £403,990
Brain Damage Moderately Severe Substantial dependence on others. Physical and cognitive disabilities could fall in this bracket. £219,070 to £282,010
Brain Damage Moderate (i) Moderate to severe intellectual deficit, impact on personality and significant risk of epileptic seizures. £150,110 to £219,070
Brain Damage Moderate (ii) Moderate to modest intellectual deficit, greatly reduced ability to work, some risk of epilepsy. £90,720 to £150,110
Brain Damage Moderate (iii) Concentration and memory impacted. Reduced working ability. Limited reliance on others. £43,060 to £90,720
Lung Serious disability Where a young person has lung disease that will progressively get worse until they pass away. £100,670 to £135,920
Lung Severe pain Lung cancer in an older person that causes severe pain and impaired function. Effect on quality of life. £70,030 to £97,330
Scarring Disfiguring A single disfiguring chest scar. £7,830 to £22,730
Mental anguish Reduced life expectancy The claimant will fear impending death. £4,670

Claiming A Special Damage Payment

You may be eligible to receive special damages as part of your claim. This head of claim reimburses you for financial costs associated with the negligent misdiagnosis.

Your special damage payout could repay you for the following:

  • Past and future medical costs
  • Travel costs and hospital parking expenses
  • Reimbursement for loss of earnings

For a more accurate assessment of how much your claim could be worth, speak with a member of our team today.

Get No Win No Fee Advice On Your Claim

You might benefit from a No Win No Fee option when you choose to claim with a solicitor. You could be offered a specific form of this agreement called a Conditional Fee Agreement.

With this kind of agreement in place, you would:

  • Not be asked to pay your lawyer up front or as the claim progressed
  • Have a legally-capped success fee deducted from your settlement if you’re awarded compensation
  • Not be asked to pay your lawyer anything if the claim is not a success

To see if you can begin your claim for misdiagnosed breast cancer with the help of a No Win No Fee lawyer, please contact today:

  • Call our claims helpline on 0161 696 9685
  • Contact us online
  • Speak with an advisor using the Live Support feature below

Guides Related To Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis Stories

The following articles may be helpful if you want to make a medical misdiagnosis claim.

My Cancer Was Misdiagnosed As Rheumatoid Arthritis – Could I Claim Compensation?

Claiming Compensation For A Surgical Error Or Surgical Negligence?

Advice On Claims For NHS Walk-In Centre Medical Negligence

An NHS guide to treatment for breast cancer

An NHS guide to living with breast cancer

Breast cancer statistics from Cancer Research UK

If you have any further questions about claiming following a breast cancer misdiagnosis, speak with our team today.

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Published by Stocks