In the United States, someone has a heart attack about every 20 seconds, and someone dies from one every minute.
We are familiar with the Hollywood version of the heart attack in which the victim dramatically clutches his chest before collapsing to the ground in agony. But that’s not the way it usually happens in “real life.”
Common Symptoms of a Heart Attack
- Shortness of breath
- Chest discomfort/pain (squeezing, pressure, or fullness)
- Discomfort in other areas of the upper body (one or both arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach)
- Cold sweat, nausea, light-headedness
These same symptoms could be attributable to bronchitis, indigestion, anxiety, musculoskeletal problems, influenza, vertigo, or gastroenteritis. That’s why it is so important that when these symptoms present, in addition to taking a medical history, doctors should do appropriate testing to rule out the possibility of a heart attack and avoid making an incorrect diagnosis which can delay essential lifesaving treatment with clot-busting drugs. For example:
- Electrocardiogram (ECG)
- Blood tests for elevated levels of certain factors (troponins and CK-MB) that indicate heart damage
- Imaging tests, including echocardiogram and perfusion scintigraphy
- ACI predictive software
Missed heart attack diagnosis is the number one cause of medical malpractice claims in the United States today.
If you or someone you love has died or been harmed as a result of a heart attack that was misdiagnosed, you should consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney without delay, because Florida has strict time limits on filing a claim.
Jim Dodson Law has many years of experience helping people receive monetary compensation when they have been harmed by improper diagnosis and other medical errors. Contact us online or call 888.815.6398 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation. Due to the nature of our small practice, we may be unable to take your case, but we always strive to connect clients with the right attorney for them. We are happy to set up referrals to other attorneys who may be better suited to assist you.
It's important to keep in mind, in order to have a solid medical malpractice claim your doctor must have been negligent in performing their services or diagnosis. Not every case will qualify as medical malpractice.