$800,000.00 settlement for misdiagnosis of colorectal cancer
Our client sought treatment from his family practice physician for occasional rectal bleeding. The doctor performed a colonoscopy in his office, which he concluded was “normal,” and diagnosed our client hemorrhoids. The patient returned to his doctor several more times for rectal bleeding but no further testing or treatment was provided. After several more months of intermittent bleeding without improvement, our client sought a second opinion from another physician, who relied on the previous colonoscopy report and rendered the same diagnosis of hemorrhoids. Over the following year our client’s bleeding worsened, so he sought treatment from a third physician, who performed an examination and found a large cancerous colorectal tumor. Our client required surgery, a colostomy (an abdominal bag for stool collection), radiation and chemotherapy treatments. In spite of the cancer treatments, the colorectal cancer metastasized (spread) to other parts of his body and his chances of survival decreased.
The defendant doctors (the first and second physicians) alleged that our client didn’t have colorectal cancer at the time of the colonoscopy, or in the alternative, the cancer was very slow growing and a diagnosis of cancer at the time of the colonoscopy wouldn’t have made any difference in our client’s prognosis.
We proved the defendant doctor (a family practice physician) wasn’t qualified to perform a colonoscopy, and should have referred our client to a gastroenterology specialist for proper diagnosis.
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