Can Lab Test Errors Cause a Medical Misdiagnosis?

Posted on January 3, 2018 at 12:00pm by
What are common lab testing errors?

Diagnostic errors are the most common medical mistake in the U.S. Doctors can fail to diagnose a patient, or they may provide a correct diagnosis after considerable time has passed. There is more than one reason why these mistakes occur by the thousands each year. Lab mistakes are one of many reasons why diagnostic errors can occur. Examples of lab test errors may include:

  • Patient mix-ups: Patients with similar names may be confused by lab technicians. New Jersey’s Master Person Index was created, in part, to reduce these types of errors.
  • Mishandling test samples: Lab samples could be contaminated or ruined if they are not stored or obtained correctly.
  • Misinterpreting test results: Doctors and other health care specialists may misinterpret test results when making a diagnosis.
  • Improperly performing imaging tests: Specialists can make mistakes while performing imaging tests. Errors made during an imaging test could lead to an incorrect diagnosis.
  • Incorrect documentation: Patients can be harmed if they or others are not informed of test results. These types of errors may be caused by a breakdown in communication or poor record-keeping practices.

These are only a handful of the many types of lab test errors that can occur. When these errors occur, patients can receive a delayed or incorrect diagnosis. A doctor could also fail to diagnose a patient with multiple health conditions that are related. Some lab errors could be caused by medical negligence. However, certain criteria must be met to pursue a claim against the laboratory, hospital or other parties responsible for the mistake.

Harmed by a Lab Test Error? Contact Our New Jersey Medical Malpractice Lawyers

The New Jersey medical malpractice lawyers at Donald G. Targan & Associates can investigate what happened to help you determine whether you could pursue a malpractice claim. Our attorneys have helped numerous clients recover multimillion dollar settlements and verdicts.

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