People all across the country trust their doctors to properly diagnose them if they are suffering from an illness. However, there are situations in which a doctor may fail to properly diagnose your illness, by either failing to spot the illness or misdiagnosing it as some other type of disease. A doctor failing to properly recognize a disease could result in a delay in your treatment.
This sort of misdiagnosis can be especially dangerous if you are suffering from lung cancer. According to the American Lung Association, the rate of new lung cancer cases in the state is 64.4 per 100,000 people, which is significantly higher than the national average. As such, if you are dealing with a medical malpractice case, you may want to work with a Pennsylvania lung cancer lawyer from Pintas & Mullins law firm. Call us today at (800) 217-6099 to learn how our team can help you with your case.
Lung Cancer Causes
Lung cancer can be caused by many different factors. Exposure to these factors could increase your chances of developing lung cancer in your life. Some of these factors include:
Asbestos is a special type of material that is composed of several different naturally occurring minerals. In the past, many industries used asbestos, especially in commercial and residential construction, where it served as fire-proofing insulation. Asbestos also was used by auto manufacturers in clutch pads, and in the marine industry for brake systems. If you inhale asbestos, then it can cause issues to develop in your lungs, including illnesses such as lung cancer or a more rare form of the disease called mesothelioma.
Radon is a colorless, odorless, and radioactive chemical which contributes very heavily towards lung cancer cases in the United States. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), radon is the highest cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. Exposure to radon tends to occur mainly in residential areas, but it can also occur in different workplaces as well.
Smoking and Secondhand Smoke
Smoking cigarettes or other tobacco products does increase the chances of someone developing lung cancer. However, exposure to secondhand smoke also can increase a person’s chances of developing lung cancer. It is important for doctors to not dismiss concerns about smoke-related lung cancer from those who do not smoke, as it could be the case that they have been exposed to secondhand smoke instead.
Exposure to Hazardous Materials
According to the American Lung Association exposure to certain hazardous materials can also cause lung cancer. Working with uranium, arsenic, asbestos, nickel, cadmium, chromium, and some petroleum products can also pose a risk.
Lung Cancer Symptoms and Misdiagnoses
Lung cancer symptoms can include things such as:
- A wheezing or violent cough
- Coughing up blood
- Shortness of breath
- Weight loss
- Chest pain
While these symptoms are quite noticeable, they also are similar to those which appear in other illnesses and diseases like pneumonia, tuberculosis, asthma, and bronchitis. However, a doctor should be able to easily identify lung cancer when a patient has a combination of these symptoms and exposure risks, along with an analysis of blood under a microscope.
Lung Cancer Lawsuit in Pennsylvania
Pursuing a lung cancer medical malpractice lawsuit in Pennsylvania can be hard to do on your own. Managing both your treatment along with your lawsuit can take a physical and mental toll on you. As such, working with a Pennsylvania lung cancer lawyer from Pintas & Mullins Law Firm may be something you want to consider. Our team can help you with your case in many ways, such as by:
Understanding Statutes of Limitations
In Pennsylvania, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice lawsuits is two years from when the alleged malpractice took place. However, this two-year period will not begin until the plaintiff knows (or should have known in the eyes of the law) that they have suffered or are suffering from an injury that was caused by the defendant’s malpractice. A plaintiff will not be able to file a lawsuit seven years from the date when the alleged malpractice was committed.
Understanding exactly when this malpractice took place and when you realized it caused you to suffer can be challenging. Our team can help piece together the order of events and show that your lawsuit is valid and falls under the state’s statute of limitations, allowing you to seek compensation.
Handling the “Certificate of Merits”
According to 231 Pennsylvania Code §1042.3, for any medical malpractice lawsuit, the plaintiff or the plaintiff’s attorney must file a “certificate of merit.” This certificate must be filed either with the lawsuit, or 60 days after the suit was filed. The certificate will state that an “appropriate licensed professional” with “sufficient education, training, knowledge, and experience” has looked at your claim and determined that the defendant’s conduct “fell outside acceptable professional standards”, which then caused you to suffer harm.
A lung cancer lawyer can find this professional and have them properly look over your case. This will help to show that the care you received from the defendant was inadequate, and it caused your lung cancer to go undiagnosed and untreated.
Fighting for Compensation
Many states will have a cap on how much compensation a plaintiff can receive in their medical malpractice case. These can be controversial, as even when malpractice is proven, the plaintiff may not be able to get the amount of damages needed to cover the costs that the malpractice has brought upon them.
In Pennsylvania, there is no such cap. This means that a plaintiff can recover compensation for all of the costs which can be attributed to the malpractice. A lung cancer lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve to properly have these costs covered.
Working with a Lung Cancer Lawyer
You do not need to take care of your lung cancer medical malpractice case alone. Rather, you can enlist the services of a Pennsylvania lung cancer lawyer from the Pintas & Mullins Law Firm. Our team will work with you to help you receive the compensation you deserve, and you do not pay anything unless or until you are awarded compensation. Give our team a call at (800) 217-6099 today and learn more about why working with us may be something you want to consider.