What are our legal options regarding being misinformed as to cancer test results?

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What are our legal options regarding being misinformed as to cancer test results?

My father had a probable skin cancer biopsied last 04/09. He was told the results were negative. He continued to have pain to the head and scalp and subsequently had 4 more visits for the pain. In August and the doctor finally opened the chart and says, “Oh my gosh, you were to have seena dermatological surgeon in April, you have cancer.” He had the surgery in 08/09. He now metastatic cancer of the  parotid gland, head and neck, and will have major surgery this week with 6 weeks of radiation. We have been told this is a directly related to the skin CA on his head. His prognosis is poor. Should we speak to a medical malpractice attorney?  In San Diego County, CA.

My father had a probable skin cancer biopsied last April 2009. He was told the results were negative. He cont to have pain to the head and scalp and subsequently had 4 more visits for the pain. It is now Aug and the doc finally opend the chart and says, “oh my gosh, you were to see a derm surgeon in April, you have cancer.” He had the surgery in Aug 09. He now July 10 has metastatic cancer of the parotid gland, head and neck and will have major surgery this week with 6 weeks of radiation. We have been told this is a directly related to the skin CA on his head. His prognosis is poor.

Asked on July 21, 2010 under Malpractice Law, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  Medical Malpractice is one of the most complicated causes of action at times and in some states attorneys must do a tremendous amount of work in order to be able to file a case at all (like providing a doctor's affidavit that says that the circumstances warrant malpractice). But you should without a doubt go and see an attorney for a consultation on this matter.  Consultations are generally free of charge.  The attorney will ask your Father to sign authorizations for medical records to have the matter reviewed.  The stage of the cancer in April of 2009 will have an impact on his prognosis or chance for remission and whether that changed because of the failure to inform you.  Good luck.


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