Conditions That Healthcare Professionals Commonly Misdiagnose

female nurse speaking with patient sitting in a bed at a hospital room

If you are looking for misdiagnosis lawyers near me, then you probably have had a pretty bad experience with a doctor who misdiagnosed you or someone close to you. While they are not always the healthcare professional’s fault, misdiagnoses do occur and can have repercussions on your health, so it’s important to be aware of the most common conditions that healthcare providers misdiagnose.

In this article, we will cover how common misdiagnoses are, the common reasons a misdiagnosis occurs, and the most commonly misdiagnosed diseases and their consequences when not diagnosed properly.

Contact The Pagan Law Firm today and speak with a seasoned medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your misdiagnosis case.

How Common Are Misdiagnoses?

Medical malpractice is a common occurrence in the U.S., and misdiagnosis rates are rising annually. According to an article posted by, there are nearly 12 million outpatients in the U.S. with misdiagnosed medical conditions every year. This means that medical professionals are missing many serious illnesses which can lead to unnecessary suffering, prolonged illness, and even death. Five percent of adults or 1 in 20 adults have had a potentially serious misdiagnosis in their lifetime. Believe it or not, 40,000 to 80,000 people die each year due to a delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis.

Common Reasons a Misdiagnosis Occurs

While a medical professional is someone who is trained and educated to diagnose a patient, certain factors can heighten the chances of having medical misdiagnosis cases.

To give you a better perspective, here are some of the most common reasons a misdiagnosis occurs.

Fragmentation of Care

Fragmentation of care is when a patient visits several specialists for the same condition. Unfortunately, this makes it difficult to get an overall picture of the patient’s health since there is no single doctor who has a complete understanding of the patient’s history and medical needs.

This commonly results in misdiagnoses since the specialist might overlook important information that could have helped them in reaching a correct diagnosis. When a doctor fails to get the complete picture, diagnosis errors are much more likely to occur.

Inexperience or Overconfidence

In some cases, a doctor fails to thoroughly listen to the patient’s history or does not consider all possible diagnoses. This could be due to inexperience or overconfidence in the doctor’s abilities.

If the doctor is too inexperienced, then they can overlook obvious clues and symptoms that would have allowed them to reach the correct diagnosis. On the other hand, if doctors are overly confident in their skills, they tend to not pay as much attention to the patient’s history and symptoms. This is a common occurrence, especially in medical cases where the symptoms are not obvious or if the patient’s condition is not too serious.

Not Enough Time With Patient

Another common reason why misdiagnosis occurs is that doctors sometimes lack sufficient time with patients. In some cases, there are too many patients and not enough time for each one.

Due to this, physicians might cut corners to finish their rounds quickly, which can lead them to overlook important details and miss out on crucial information that could have helped them come up with an accurate diagnosis. This type of misdiagnosis occurs often because doctors did not take enough time with their patients or did not ask the right set of questions. Public hospitals and community health clinics with a large number of patients are particularly at risk for this kind of misdiagnosis.

Lack of Diagnostic Testing

This issue can be connected to overconfidence or just a lack of knowledge, but failing to order diagnostic testing can lead to a misdiagnosis. Common examples include not doing imaging scans like X-rays or CT scans, or not performing blood tests. This could be because doctors are too eager to make a diagnosis without looking at any concrete evidence or data. If doctors fail to do the necessary tests they may end up putting their patients at risk of a misdiagnosis. 

If you or someone you love is an injury victim due to the negligence of a healthcare provider, The Pagan Law Firm can help. You can call our New York medical misdiagnosis attorneys today for a free consultation. We can help you navigate the legal process and file for a misdiagnosis lawsuit if found appropriate.

Lack of Follow Up

If there is a clear doctor-patient relationship, it is necessary for the doctor to always follow up with a patient after their treatment. Without this follow-up, the doctor has failed to meet their duty of care.

Without the proper aftercare, this can lead to a medical misdiagnosis case if another condition arises in the meantime and is not addressed at the right time. Patients need to keep follow-up appointments with their doctors to make sure that their condition is monitored and treated accordingly.

It is important to note that if a patient does not come for the follow-up appointment that was scheduled with the doctor, the doctor is not negligent because the patient is not doing everything in their power to get better and fully heal from their condition.

Remember, if you are the patient, you are to bear the consequences of a misdiagnosis, and that is why you must take your health seriously and make sure to have regular check-ups. If you ever feel like something could be wrong or if you are having any unusual symptoms, don’t hesitate to reach out to your doctor. A timely diagnosis can prevent you from a lot of trouble down the road.

If you believe your healthcare provider has acted negligently in any way, don’t wait to contact The Pagan Law Firm and file a claim. Call us at 212-967-8202 or fill out our online contact form.

Most Commonly Misdiagnosed Diseases and Their Consequences if Not Diagnosed Properly

Moving forward, it’s important to know some of the most common diseases that are often misdiagnosed. This is to help you be aware of the dangers of misdiagnosis and also to help you be more vigilant when seeking medical attention.


According to statistics, 10 to 20 percent of cancer cases are misdiagnosed. This is due to several reasons, including:

  • Failure to order additional tests and scans
  • Lack of awareness of certain cancer symptoms
  • Misinterpreting test results

A failure to diagnose cancer can result in delayed treatment, which can in turn lead to a worse prognosis and more aggressive treatment. This can be anything from lung cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer, and other forms of cancers that need an urgent diagnosis and treatment.


According to a systematic review by NCBI, 9 percent of all strokes are hardly recognized at first medical contact. Strokes can be caused by a variety of factors, from hypertension to a blood clot, and it takes a specialized diagnosis to identify the cause of the stroke. The severity also plays a big role in diagnosing a stroke, and the earlier it is identified, the better the outcome.

If not diagnosed properly, the consequences of stroke can be a long-term disability or even death. Thus, ensuring that you are receiving the right diagnosis and appropriate treatment is of utmost importance to prevent a more serious outcome.

Heart Attack

Another condition that is often overlooked or misdiagnosed is a heart attack. According to Escardio, up to 8 percent of patients who come in with chest pain are not correctly diagnosed as having a heart attack. In women, 5 percent of cases were initially misdiagnosed, whereas, in men, it was 3 percent. 

A heart attack can be deadly if not diagnosed properly, as the patient can suffer from irreparable damage to their heart muscle or even death. It is important to know the symptoms and seek medical attention as soon as possible.

While the symptoms of a heart attack can be easily recognized, there are certain conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure that can slow down the diagnosis process. This is why you must maintain your health to avoid any serious consequences associated with a misdiagnosis.

Lyme Disease

Unfamiliar to most and often misdiagnosed, Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi which is transmitted to humans through a tick bite. This can lead to a wide variety of symptoms from fever, fatigue, joint pain, rashes, and more, and can mimic other illnesses such as the flu or even arthritis.

Due to the commonality of some of its symptoms, Lyme disease is often misdiagnosed as other conditions, leading to further complications that can take longer to be treated. If left untreated, it can even lead to long-term neurological and joint damage. Doctors routinely fail to diagnose Lyme disease, so it’s important to be aware of the symptoms and ask your doctor for an appropriate test. Being aware of the symptoms mentioned above will give you a headstart to inform your doctor of the possible diagnosis.

Celiac Disease

Another condition that is often misdiagnosed is celiac disease. This is a digestive disorder triggered by the consumption of gluten, which can lead to an immune response in the small intestine and damage it over time. People who suffer from this disease are often misdiagnosed due to its varied symptoms, such as abdominal pain, bloating, fatigue, and more.

Since symptoms are often associated with minor digestive issues, celiac disease can be misdiagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or lactose intolerance. Without the right diagnosis, people suffering from this condition may not get the appropriate treatment, leading to further complications and a prolonged recovery time. Make sure to check with your doctor if you are experiencing any of the symptoms and ask to be tested for celiac disease.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

More common in people between the ages of 40 and 60, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a complex disorder that affects the body’s energy levels. It can be hard to diagnose as it often involves other symptoms such as sleep disturbances, muscle pain, joint pain, headaches, and more.

Extreme exhaustion also makes it difficult for those suffering from CFS to get through their daily activities, which can lead to a misdiagnosis of depression or anxiety. To make matters worse, the exact cause of this condition is still unknown, leading to a delay in receiving an accurate diagnosis.

It is important to note that chronic fatigue syndrome also affects children, adolescents, and adults of any age. Thus, ensure you or someone you love that is suffering from symptoms of CFS is checked by a doctor who specializes in this area.


Fibromyalgia is another condition that is frequently misdiagnosed due to its range of symptoms. This medical condition is characterized by widespread muscle pain and fatigue that can last for months or years. People who are suffering from this condition tend to experience more pain in certain areas of the body, with tender points located on the neck, shoulders, lower back, hips, and more.

The symptoms of fibromyalgia can mirror those of other conditions such as arthritis or bursitis which can lead to misdiagnosis. Anxiety, depression, incapacitating fatigue, and elevated pain sensitivity are some of the other conditions that can accompany fibromyalgia, making it even more difficult to diagnose.

If you are suffering from any of these symptoms along with widespread muscle pain and fatigue, it is highly recommended to schedule an appointment with your doctor for further evaluation. Failure to diagnose fibromyalgia can lead to delayed treatment and progression of the condition which will not only affect your physical health but also your mental well-being.


Lupus is a condition where the body’s immune system attacks its healthy cells and tissues. This can lead to inflammation, pain, and damage in various parts of the body including the skin, joints, kidneys, heart, lungs, and brain.

The symptoms of lupus are quite varied and can be mistaken for other conditions such as fatigue, joint pain, and rash. As a result, it is often misdiagnosed and can lead to further complications if left untreated.

For an accurate diagnosis, it is important to inform your doctor of any symptoms that you are experiencing along with the family history of lupus or other autoimmune diseases. This will help them better understand the condition and recommend the right treatment plan for you.

Misdiagnosis of lupus can have serious consequences such as permanent organ damage. Thus, it is important to seek medical attention if you are experiencing any of the symptoms and get tested for lupus as soon as possible.

Parkinson’s Disease

Common in people over the age of 60, Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder that affects the nervous system. It is characterized by tremors, stiffness of the muscles, and difficulty with motor skills which can lead to an imbalance in posture or gait.

Unfortunately, these symptoms are often mistaken for other conditions such as arthritis or fatigue due to having similar signs and symptoms. If you or your loved one happens to experience these symptoms, it is important to visit a doctor specialized in this field.

Getting a misdiagnosis from a medical professional can have serious consequences. Call The Pagan Law Firm today at 212-967-8202 to get the compensation you deserve.

What To Do if You Have Been Misdiagnosed

Now that we know some of the conditions that are commonly misdiagnosed, it is important to take some steps if you or someone you know has been misdiagnosed.

Get a Second Opinion

The first thing you have to do if you believe you suffered harm due to medical negligence is to make sure that you get a second opinion from another doctor. This will allow you to confirm or rule out the misdiagnosis and receive the necessary treatment for your condition. After all, your health is your priority, so it is important to make sure that you’re getting the most accurate diagnosis and best care possible.

Seek Legal Advice

Most medical malpractice cases involve a misdiagnosis, so if you believe that your condition was misdiagnosed and it led to further complications, consider seeking legal advice from The Pagan Law Firm. We will help you understand the requirements for filing a medical malpractice claim and legally obtain compensation for any losses you have suffered as a result of being misdiagnosed.

How The Pagan Law Firm Can Help

At The Pagan Law Firm, we have attorneys that have decades of experience in handling medical malpractice claims. We work with malpractice victims and their families to ensure that they receive the justice and compensation that the other party may be liable for.

We Help You Gather Evidence

When it comes to medical negligence cases, evidence is key. We work with our clients to help them gather all the necessary evidence to prove their claims and help build a strong case. From medical records to expert opinions, we make sure that everything is in order before proceeding with the lawsuit.

We Take Care of All the Paperwork

A medical malpractice case involves a lot of paperwork and filing processes that can be quite tedious. Fortunately, our attorneys are well-versed in all the legalities when it comes to these cases and will handle all the paperwork for you. We make sure that every document is in order before submitting them so that you don’t have to worry about any details or technicalities.

We Help You Negotiate

Most common negligence claims are settled outside of court through a settlement negotiation. Our attorneys will work with you and take into consideration all the factors that come into play to ensure that you receive fair compensation for the damages. With this, financial recovery can be achieved without having to go through the hassle of a lengthy trial.

We Represent You in Court

If the other party does not agree to settle, then we will represent you in court. Our attorneys have the experience and resources necessary to ensure that your case is argued properly and fairly so that a successful outcome can be achieved.

We Offer Free Legal Consultation

If you’re unsure whether you have a valid medical negligence claim, we offer free legal consultation to all of our clients. This will help you understand whether you have a case or not and whether or not you should proceed with it. Our consultation also includes a review of your legal options and strategies that you can take to achieve your desired outcome, informing you of the potential risks and rewards involved.

Contact The Pagan Law Firm Today

Don’t let medical negligence go unpunished. If you believe that you have a valid medical negligence claim, get in touch with The Pagan Law Firm today. We are here to ensure that you receive the justice and compensation that you deserve for your suffering.

Take the first step in getting the justice you deserve. Contact us today and let’s discuss your case.

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