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Doctors not paying attention can lead to patient harm

The health care system in this country is largely broken. Not only is it cost-prohibitive to many, but some doctors just aren't attentive. Instead of taking the time to listen to their patients, many doctors will try to rush through as many patients as they can within a day. Unfortunately, the people who need help the most are likely going to suffer harm because of this.

One issue that can come from doctors who aren't truly listening to their patients is that serious medical conditions can be missed. When this happens, there is a chance that a person who could have been successfully treated might now face a terminal diagnosis. There isn't any good reason for this, especially when all the signs about the condition were present.

For one woman, inattentive doctors tried to pass her symptoms off as fibromyalgia and other conditions when the truth was that she had metastatic breast cancer. One attending doctor even noted that the back pain she was experiencing was just depression causing pain in her body. She wasn't only seen by that one doctor. She also went to two urgent care offices and was told that the pain was due to an autoimmune condition or overworking her back as a chef.

It wasn't until she felt an unusual lump in her breast that things headed toward a diagnosis, but by this time, months had passed and the condition was worse than she expected. As it turned out, she had breast cancer that had spread to her spine. This was the cause of the pain.

After her diagnosis, she discovered something that shook her to her core. Her medical records noted that she had suspicious lesions on her spine and the bone in her hip. Nobody had bothered to tell her this, and there wasn't any follow-up.

Patients should never feel like they are being ignored by a doctor. Those who have a situation similar to this woman's might opt to pursue legal claims for compensation based on the misdiagnosis.

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