The Doctor Failed to Diagnose a Patient with a Heart Attack

Man Holding his ChestIn 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.

Do You Think You May Have A Medical Malpractice Claim?

If you believe you may have a Florida medical malpractice claim you need to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney, in order to comply with Florida’s pre-suit investigation requirements, and the strict time limits involved.  Contact us online or call our office directly at 888.815.6398 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case. Even if we are unable to take on your case, we always do our best to suggest other attorneys who can assist you.

It's important to keep in mind, in order to have a solid medical malpractice claim your doctor or surgeon must have been negligent in performing their services or diagnosis. Not every case will qualify as medical malpractice.

Jim Dodson
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A Florida injury lawyer, family man and avid cyclist who clients have trusted for over 25 years.