doctors examining an x-ray report in hospital

Misdiagnosis Claims

Misdiagnosis Errors at a Glance

  • Medical misdiagnosis and delays in diagnosis are some of the most common types of medical negligence claims.
  • Diagnosis errors can happen at one appointment, or span many appointments, over a number of years.
  • Misdiagnosis claims involving the delay in diagnosis of cancer are particularly common, and can have serious implications.
  • We help people claim compensation for diagnosis errors on a no win no fee basis.
  • Contact us for a no obligation consultation.

Medical Misdiagnosis Claims

Medical misdiagnosis happens in all areas of medicine but we most commonly see claims arising from treatment received from General Practitioners (GPs), or accident and emergency (A&E) staff. These are both busy environments which need an understanding of many areas of medicine, which might increase the risk of a mistake being made.

Misdiagnoses can be serious. They can lead to unnecessary treatment and delays in getting the required treatment.

There are two main types of diagnosis error:

Missed diagnosis or delayed diagnosis

A missed diagnosis is when a health professional fails to identify or suspect a condition; sometimes called a failure to diagnose. However, it may result in a delayed diagnosis; where you will receive the correct diagnosis, but only after a significant delay. This might delay you being referred to a specialist or receiving the necessary treatment.

Misdiagnosis error

Wrong diagnosis

A wrong diagnosis, also known as a misdiagnosis, happens when a medical professional diagnoses the wrong condition. This will not only stop you getting the treatment you need, but you might also receive the wrong treatment, which could in turn exacerbate your condition or cause additional injury or illness.

Misdiagnoses happen in almost all areas of medicine. Some of the most common diagnosis errors we see happen in the following areas: –

  • Fractures and dislocations might be missed in A&E because no x-ray was taken or an x-ray was misinterpreted. Scaphoid fractures are commonly missed.
  • Cancer might be missed for months, or even years, by a GP who fails to recognise key signs and symptoms. Delays like this can reduce the chance of survival, or lead to more serious treatment.
  • When symptoms of serious spinal conditions, such as Cauda Equina Syndrome, are not identified, delays in receiving appropriate treatment can have significant consequences.
  • Appendicitis needs prompt treatment, and a delay in diagnosing the condition will prevent this. However, they can often be misdiagnosed as gastrointestinal issues.
  • Misdiagnosis of heart attacks are common. According to a study done by researchers at the University of Leeds, and other institutions in the UK, almost one in three heart attacks are initially misdiagnosed.
  • Infections like sepsis, staphylococcal or meningococcal can have catastrophic consequences if they are not recognised and treated promptly.

Examining an x-ray

The purpose of compensation is to return you, as close as possible, to where you would have been if the negligence had not happened.

You can claim compensation for the problems a negligent diagnosis has caused. Claims involving a diagnosis error often involve a pre-existing injury or condition, so expert evidence is essential to determining the damage caused by the negligence.

Like other types of medical negligence claims, as well as your injuries, you can claim compensation for financial losses, such as:

  • Loss of earnings
  • Care and assistance
  • Medication

Pryers are experts in misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis claims. You can speak with one of our specialist team on 01904 556600 or email us,, for free no obligation advice.

Misdiagnosis Errors Success Stories

Compensation for Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis

June came to us to gain compensation after repeatedly receiving misdiagnoses of breast cancer. Unfortunately, by the time she was correctly diagnosed, curative treatment was no longer available. Breast cancer symptoms misdiagnosis June is a mum that loved to exercise and was in good health. Unfortunately, this began to change when she informed her GP […]

Read more

Melanoma Misdiagnosis Led to Six Years of Preparing for the Worst

Lauren approached Pryers for help and advice after she received a melanoma misdiagnosis (a form of skin cancer). Diagnosed with Melanoma Lauren was only a young adult when she noticed a strange lesion on her buttock. She went to see her GP, who, after a discussion and review of the lesion, referred her to a […]

Read more

£42,000 Settlement

A photograph of someone in surgical gloves examining a potential melanoma, as Pryers Solicitors represented a client who was the victim of a melanoma misdiagnosis

Misdiagnosis of wrist fracture leads to permanent injury

In 2004 Becky slipped on some ice. She fell awkwardly, landing with most of her weight on her right wrist. She went to A&E for x-rays, and was discharged after being told it was only a sprain. As a result, Becky continued with her usual activities for six years. As the years passed her wrist […]

Read more

£125,000 Settlement

Fractured Wrist

Key People

Carmel Walsh

Carmel Walsh

Partner

Carmel Walsh has spent the last 18 years acting for claimants in personal injury and clinical negligence cases and more recently specialising [...]Read more
Lisa Swales

Lisa Swales

Partner

Lisa Swales joined Pryers Solicitors as a partner, in October 2019. She brings with her many years experience as a clinical negligence lawyer,[...]Read more
Richard Starkie

Richard Starkie

Partner

Richard Starkie qualified as a solicitor in 2001. He became a partner at Pryers in 2013, where he leads a team of solicitors and other lawyers [...]Read more