As consumers of medical services, we expect that our doctors have the education, training and experience necessary to property diagnose, treat and monitor our illnesses, diseases and other conditions. When a doctor fails to catch a serious diagnosis, the consequences can be serious, doing significant harm to the patient.

One example is the failure to diagnose diabetes, which can lead to heart attack if left untreated. According to new research, 10 percent of those who suffer heart attacks have undiagnosed diabetes. That number was reached by examining health records at 24 hospitals nationwide.  

Many Americans are not aware that diabetes significantly raises the risk of heart attack. In fact, two out of three people with diabetes die from cardiovascular disease, according to the American Heart Association. By properly diagnosing and beginning treatment for diabetes in heart attack patients, treatment of heart disease can be improved.                              

All of this, of course, is a word of warning to those who have had a heart attack. Physicians may not always have perspective and foresight necessary to consider the correlation between diabetes and heart attack. When a physician fails to inform their patient of such risks, the harm to the patient can be significant.

Medical malpractice litigation is not necessarily a possibility in every case of medical error. Certain legal requirements have to be met and the costs and benefits of entering into litigation must be weighed. A good first step to take for injured patients is to consult with an experienced medical malpractice attorney to have their case evaluated. 

Source: Medical Daily, “Diabetes May Cause Heart Attacks When Doctors Fail To Diagnosis The Disease,” Samantha Olson, June 3, 2014.