What are my rights if I was misdiagnosed in an ER?

I went to the ER after feeling pain in my abdominal region. Due to the lack of doctors that night and surplus of patients, I was waiting for quite some time. After finally being attended to and having a physical test done (by pressing down on abdomin) and a scan, I was sent home with a paper saying I had some sort of dehydration. However, after that night I was in extreme discomfort; pain comparable to being stabbed. I didn’t sleep for 3 nights and finally returned to the ER. I was then diagnosed with appendicitis but because I was sent initially home, I also had peritonitis and many complications with a lengthy hospital stay of a month and a half.

Asked on March 14, 2014 under Malpractice Law, New York


Anne Brady / Law Office of Anne Brady

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

It may be difficult to prevail in a medical malpractice claim because you waited three days to return to the hospital.  If you were in that much pain, most people would have returned sooner.  So your damages may be limited to those due to a delay of 24 hours or so.  That said, the other question will be whether your misdiagnosis constituted negligence, given your symptoms when you first presented.  A medical expert will be needed to review your records and make that determination.  See a personal injury/medical malpractice attorney and bring a copy of your hospital records.

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