New Mexico residents are likely aware that many medical conditions can become extremely serious and even life-threatening when they are not diagnosed in a timely manner. Potentially serious ailments often go undiagnosed because sufferers delay seeking medical attention, but doctors sometimes either miss dangerous conditions completely during physical examinations or mistake them for more benign ailments.
Early detection and treatment is particularly important with many cancers. Cancer of the colon claims the lives of thousands of Americans every year, but it is one of the most treatable forms of cancer when detected early. This form of the disease can be reliably detected by a colonoscopy test, but the symptoms may sometimes be dismissed as hemorrhoids by patients and doctors alike.
Hemorrhoids are a common ailment and sufferers often do not bother to consult a doctor and rely instead on over-the-counter medications. While colon cancer may only afflict one in 20 Americans, it is deadly enough that medical treatment should be sought if hemorrhoid symptoms persist. However, individuals who believe that they are suffering from hemorrhoids should seek medical attention as soon as possible if they notice blood in their stool. Pain in the lower abdomen, persistent bleeding and a noticeable change in bowel movements could also be signs of a serious medical condition.
A failure to diagnose can sometimes be the difference between a complete recovery and an early grave. Patients who receive a wrong or delayed diagnosis may want to seek civil remedies if their doctors failed to take their complaints seriously, ordered the wrong tests or acted in an otherwise inappropriate manner. Proving medical malpractice involves demonstrating that medical professionals failed to meet accepted standards of care, and attorneys for the patients may call upon medical experts to establish that mistakes were made.