When you’re in the midst of a medical emergency, there is usually only one thing that you want: answers. But what if you doctor is not providing you with all of the information that they know? What if they are leaving you in the dark on important issues?
In early 2011, a doctor told Edward Hines that he was cancer free after removing a tumor on his bladder. The doctor did not call the patient back a week later when the pathology came back showing that the man still had bladder cancer. It took a year before Hines discovered that he did indeed have cancer. When the original doctor was approached about the issue, he blamed it on Hines for not following up, per his suggestion. Hines died less than a year later at the age of 58.
Although uncommon, these situations are not unheard of. It’s up to your doctor to provide you with all of the information you need to make a good decisions about your health. Sometimes, however, they withhold that information and make decisions on their own. What are common things that doctors do not always address with patients?
It’s a Heart Issue, Not a Weight Issue
Heart disease is a huge threat in America, and though it is prevalent in men, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it is the leading cause of death for women, claiming about 1 in every 4 women’s deaths.
With an issue this serious, you would think it would be addressed frequently. However, there have been multiple cases where heart problems were chalked up to weight and health issues, and instead of being treated with normal medication, women were instructed to lose weight.
In many of these cases, the women were not even made aware that there was a heart issue underneath it all. The American College of Cardiology found that 75 percent of women were at risk for heart disease. However, only 16 percent were made aware of this by their doctor.
If your doctor tells you that you need to lose weight, ask questions. Make them explain how they came to that conclusion and what other diseases or conditions your symptoms could indicate.
Your Lungs May Not Be as Clear as They Appear
Many doctors do not recommend thorough lung screenings for patients, even heavy smokers. Typically, the appropriate screening for lung cancer in long-term smokers is low-dose computer tomography (LDCT). However, in a survey of more than 100 family doctors, more than 50 percent had made one or zero LDCT referrals over the course of a year. Doctors cite concerns about radiation and making their patients’ unnecessarily stressed or anxious.
These screenings are typically the only way to detect early stage lung cancer. According to Mount Sinai Hospital, 85 percent of lung cancer patients are diagnosed at late stage. If you have a history of smoking, ask your doctor about whether or not a screening would be right for you.
Do You Remember Your Memory Fading?
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 55 percent of people with the disease are never made aware that they have it. Doctors claim that this decision is made with the hope of avoiding emotional stress. However, you have to wonder at the emotional stress caused by losing one’s memory and never being told about it.
If you have a history of Alzheimer’s in your family, talk to your doctor about when and how you would like to be informed if you ever show signs of the condition.
Help from an Indiana Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Unfortunately, sometimes doctors don’t tell the whole truth. If your doctor did not tell you the whole truth and your condition worsened as a result, you could be entitled to compensation. Call Hensley Legal Group today for a free consultation, or contact us online.