What can we do if my daughter was misdiagnosed with constipation when she had a nearly bursted appendix?

We did go against her doctor’s advice and eventually take her to OHSU. There was a lot of damage to our relationship and the entire procedure was overly dramatic which could have been avoided with a proper diagnosis.

Asked on August 15, 2014 under Malpractice Law, Oregon


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Malpractice cases can be very expensive--you need to hire (and pay for yourself; the other side usually does not have to pay) a medical expert to testify. Such experts can easily cost upwards of $1,500.

If, as we hope, you daughter has not suffered lasting impairment or harm, then the most you could typically recover is the *additional* medical expense (and lost wages, from missing work, if any) caused by the misdiagnosis--that is, extra costs you would not have incurred if the diagnosis had been correct from the start. Unless you did incur significant out-of-pocket (borne by you, not an insurer) medical costs, or your daughter has suffered some lasting impairment, it is very unlikely that legal action would be worthwhile, especially since winning is never a given--even good cases lose sometimes.

If you did incur significant costs or your daughter has a lasting impairment due to the misdiagnosis, then you should consult with a medical malpractice attorney to evaluate your case in more detail.

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