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Study Finds Referral to a Dentist Could Delay Mouth Cancer Diagnosis

Dentist MouthHealth conditions that involve the mouth typically result in a dental referral, but a new study has determined that this can delay the diagnosis of mouth cancer. Sadly, in some cases, that delay could mean the difference between life and death, or a positive outcome versus a poor one. Should this happen to yourself or someone you love, it could result in a medical malpractice case. Learn more with help from the following information.

A Closer Look at the Study

Published in the British Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, the study examined the outcomes of 91 dental referrals. A total of six of those patients ended up receiving a mouth cancer diagnosis. While this, in and of itself, is concerning, the study authors pointed out that the biggest concern was the delay. Over half of all mouth cancers are not diagnosed until they hit an advanced stage, and that can complicate treatment for patients.

When a Referral Leads to a Delayed Diagnosis

While many complications can arise from a delayed diagnosis of mouth cancer, the most concerning is the risk of metastasis – the growth of cancer and the possibility of it spreading from one area of the body to another. Sinuses can become inflamed or filled with cancer, so can the brain, throat, lymph nodes, and other surrounding tissues. If this happens, then the patient may require stronger or additional treatment. Their risk of mortality may also increase significantly once cancer starts to metastasize.

Although compensation cannot make up for the added pain or possible fatality of a patient who experienced a delayed diagnosis, it can help cover expenses. Examples of compensable damages under a delayed cancer diagnosis case may include:

  • Medical expenses related to added costs and treatments;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Wrongful death;
  • Scarring or disfigurement; and
  • Loss of consortium (for spouses that have lost a loved one).
Obtaining the Compensation That You Deserve

Medical malpractice suits can be extremely complex, and even the smallest mistake can lead to a complete loss for the plaintiff. As such, victims are always encouraged to seek legal assistance with a medical malpractice case; that recommendation is even more critical in a case involving a delayed cancer diagnosis and/or death.

Dedicated and experienced, Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP can help you. We fight aggressively for the most favorable outcome possible, and we stand by our clients, every step of the way. Get the compensation that you and your loved ones deserve. Call (408) 289-1417 and schedule a free initial consultation with our San Jose medical malpractice lawyers today.

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My experience with Attorney Brad Corsiglia during my recent medical malpractice case was nothing short of amazing given the very stressful circumstances. I was fortunate to find Brad highly recommended from a mutual contact and from the very beginning of the process, Brad was truly engaged and knowledgeable in understanding my case and providing input on what avenues were available to me. Michelle M.