Delayed diagnosis

Delayed Diagnosis and Medical Malpractice

A delayed or missed diagnosis (or misdiagnosis) can have a devastating impact on a patient’s life. It can result in the worsening of a condition or disease, leading to painful, long-lasting, and life-altering complications, and, in some cases, death.

Delayed diagnosis can be grounds for a medical malpractice claim, which is a lawsuit against someone who treated (or failed to treat) you, including a physician, nurse, midwife, technician, or hospital worker. Medical malpractice claims can also be filed against a hospital itself.

A doctor or other health professional will be found liable if they are negligent and if their negligence caused the person’s injury. In other words, if there was proper care, the person would have probably been treated promptly and avoided the injury.

Examples of Delayed Diagnosis Leading to Serious Injury

Missed diagnosis of infection or missed diagnosis of cancer are two clear examples of actionable missed diagnosis cases.

We’ve previously blogged about several Toronto children who were seriously injured after doctors failed to diagnose a Strep A infection. In all three cases, the children (who ranged in age from 2.5 years old to 11 years old) presented at the emergency room with fever and flu-like symptoms. In all the cases, doctors informed the parents that their child’s diagnosis was the flu and were told, in at least one case, that what should be done is Tylenol and rest.

In all three cases, the children developed sepsis, which seriously affected their organs. The parents of one of the children were informed that their son had been “within seconds of not surviving” after they re-attended the emergency room following an initial diagnosis of flu. Another one of the other children had her left arm amputated above the elbow after spending a week on life support and seventeen days in the ICU.

In a more recent tragedy, a young mother died of a Strep A infection just days after giving birth. Following delivery, the woman’s husband said that she was short of breath, tired, and bloated, and wanted pain relief. This then escalated and the woman developed a fever and was put on antibiotics. She was eventually moved into the ICU where she was sedated and treated with more antibiotics, but where she, unfortunately, later died of sepsis.

In addition to Strep A, other diseases and conditions that are commonly misdiagnosed are:

  • Asthma;
  • Heart Attack;
  • Stroke.

Establishing a Claim

In order to succeed with a delayed diagnosis claim (or misdiagnosis claim), the plaintiff (i.e. injured person bringing the claim, or that person’s family) must:

  • Establish that the conduct of the relevant medical professional fell below the standard of care that the patient was entitled to receive; and
  • The negligence of that medical professional caused or contributed to the patient’s injury.

Negligence in a medical context means that the medical professional either did something they should not have done, or failed to do something they ought to have done (as measured against the expected, reasonable treatment which should have been provided in the same circumstances).

It can be difficult to establish negligence, and delayed diagnosis cases are both very complex and challenging to prosecute. These cases often involve very technical questions of both medicine and law. It is very important that the lawyer that you choose to represent you is knowledgeable in both fields.

How Can a Medical Malpractice Lawyer Help?

At Sommers Roth & Elmaleh, our firm has been successfully representing patients and families affected by delayed diagnosis for more than 40 years. We are one of the oldest and most established medical malpractice firms in Canada. Our compassionate and highly skilled medical malpractice lawyers regularly help our clients navigate the often overwhelming medical-legal system.

We have helped many patients and families who have been affected by complications arising from failure to diagnose and/or delayed diagnosis, including:

If you believe you have been injured or have had your life significantly impacted by a delayed diagnosis or failure to diagnose, contact Sommers Roth & Elmaleh. Depending on the circumstances, you and your family may be entitled to significant compensation for your injuries. This compensation includes damages in recognition of injuries suffered, damages for financial losses or expenses resulting from the injury, future care costs, and money for the purchase of any medical equipment or supplies needed following the injury.

At Sommers Roth & Elmaleh, we offer compassionate and knowledgeable guidance on every aspect of a medical malpractice claim, and have helped clients from all across Canada, including Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland. Call us at 1-844-777-7372 or contact us online for a free consultation.

 

Disclaimer and Liability Exclusion

The information on this page is provided for general information purposes only. It should not be construed as legal advice. It does not constitute legal or other professional advice or an opinion of any kind. Readers should seek specific legal advice regarding any specific legal issues. We do not in any way guarantee or warrant the accuracy, completeness or quality of the information on this page. The posts on this page are current as of their original date of publication, but they should not be relied upon as timely, accurate or fit for any particular purpose.

Accessing or using this web site or the content herein does not create a lawyer-client relationship.

This page may contain links to third party web sites. We are unable to, and do not, monitor and guarantee the quality of the information disseminated and accessible through those links, which are provided for convenience only. We do not endorse the information contained in linked web sites nor guarantee its accuracy, timeliness or fitness for a particular purpose.

    If you have been affected by medical malpractice anywhere in Canada contact us for a free consultation.
    You pay us nothing unless we win.



    A lawyer from Sommers Roth & Elmaleh will be in touch with you as soon as possible. Please note that no lawyer-client, advisory, or fiduciary relationship is created by your inquiry. All information provided is confidential.

    The above information is not legal advice. Past results of cases and recoveries by our medical malpractice lawyers against hospitals, doctors, midwives, nurses and other healthcare professionals are not necessarily indicative of future results. The amounts recovered and other litigation outcomes will vary according to the facts in individual cases.


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    Hilt this Tamrate
    Hilt this Tamrate
    23 May 2023
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    Dear Mr Hilik Y. And Jeremy Syrtash. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to you and Sommers Roth and Elmaleh Professional Corporation staff for all you have done with respect to my wife case. My wife was a victim of Medical Malpractice after giving birth to our daughter. She become legally disabled both physically and mentally. The entire family devastated emotionally as my wife struggle to cope with the new reality. The case of Medical Malpractice is quite often a complex case to prove. However, due to your strong commitment, knowledge and dedication combined with strong professionalism the case was successfully won after a long arduous fight. The victory would not have been possible without your dedication and thorough research in the implementation of the standards of the Sommers Roth and Elmaleh Professional Corporation. Justice prevailed at last which in turn allowed my vulnerable wife to feel more optimistic about her future and that of our family. The positive outcome of this case has changed our lives forever. It would not have been possible without the excellent representation of Sommers Roth and Elmaleh Professional Corporation and its legal counsel. My wife and I will be deeply grateful for the successful outcome of this case for many years to come. Solomon Regassa
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    4 January 2023
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    I would like to take this opportunity to express my most sincere gratitude towards Sommers Roth & Elmaleh, from the day I met with Hilik and his team, they been not only highly knowledgeable but also extremely sensitive towards me and my family, providing us with the best legal service possible. It goes without saying, that I strongly recommend them to anyone looking for a charismatic, quality and result oriented legal team.
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    10 October 2022
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    We deeply appreciate Sommers Roth & Elmaleh for their professional skills and hard-working through the whole process of my son’s case. I still remember the first conversation we took with Mr. Hilik Y Elmaleh in his lawyer office sixteen years ago. From then on, your dedication, patience, understanding and continuous communications kept our encouragements and expectations for my son and our family. With the case settled down, my son can receive the full financial support, continuous therapies and finishing his university course. It is no doubt to say that Sommers Roth & Elmaleh not only changed our family’s life but also did contributions to the society, because my son can grow in a happy and health way in his teenage and receive university education from this autumn. Again we hereby strongly recommend the services provided by the lawyer office Sommers Roth & Elmaleh to those who needs the similar legal consultation and support. Even the door of your family was closed by some unfortunate events, there are more windows can be opened. The lawyers in Sommers Roth & Elmaleh are exactly the people who can open the windows and convert the sun-shine again to your family: Mr. Hilik Y Elmaleh,Mr.Jeremy Syrtash, Miss Fanny Peter ...etc. Finally, we express the deepest gratitude and appreciation again to Mr. Hilik Y Elmaleh and lawyer office Sommers Roth & Elmaleh. Wish a brighter future of Sommers Roth & Elmaleh !
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    Meggie Zhangkrk6hdjybfjt
    6 October 2022
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    I am so glad that my son's CP medical case was completely successful. I appreciate lawyer Hilik Elmaleh, Jeremy Syrtash, Fanny Peter and their team's hard work. They are so knowledgeable, responsible and reliable. Thanks is not enough to express my gratitude. Mr. Hilik Elmaleh deserves "The Best Lawyer in Canada" award.
    Tony Zhou
    Tony Zhou
    29 September 2022
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    I would like to extend my gratitude towards Mr. Hilik Elmaleh, Jermey Syntash, and Fanny Peter for their dedication, time, effort, and knowledge invested into my case. This is honestly the best team of lawyers in Canada. I would highly recommend them for any of your cases.
    Dianne Keckes
    Dianne Keckes
    18 July 2022
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    I would like to take this opportunity to thank our daughter's "Dream Team", Hilik Elmaleh, Jeremy Syrtash and Fanny Peter. The compassion, dedication, knowledge, experience and their recognition in the legal community have ensured us that we were on the right track working with the firm Sommers, Roth and Elmaleh. Words cannot express enough my gratitude! I will be forever grateful!
    Ivica J Sokic
    Ivica J Sokic
    6 June 2022
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    Thank you does not begin to express the depth of gratitude I have for Sommers Roth & Elmaleh Professional Corporation. From the first day I sat in Hilik's office, not once did I feel apprehensive. My concerns and worries were put at ease due to the kindness and compassion of Hilik, Jeremy and Fanny and their relentless persistence to secure my daughter's future. This has been a long but successful endeavor during some difficult times and through it all, the Team has been resilient, informative and were always available. I highly recommend this dedicated and professional law firm and I will be forever in their debt.
    Arden Melnechuk
    Arden Melnechuk
    1 December 2021
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    I was in a serious horse accident where the horse was injured and should never have been ridden. The owner of the horse was aware that the horse had chronic arthritis issues and the veterinarians at Guelph had told him the horse could decompensate at any time and could cause serious injury whether being led or ridden and could never be jumped again. The horse had been shown at the grand prix level and the owner had payed quite a bit of money for him. After consulting with several lawyers and having one that did represent me at the discoveries who later quit, Jeremy Syrtash took on the case and followed through with guelph university. That is how we found out that the vets had recommended the above. Without Jeremy's efforts and follow through the case would never have continued on. Because of these efforts the case was successful. Thank you so much Jeremy. You are a dedicated, thorough, excellent lawyer and it's been a pleasure to have you as my lawyer!!
    Megha Sharma
    Megha Sharma
    16 April 2021
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    Mr. Elmaleh and his team are very professional and experts in their field. Recommend to everyone who has suffered medical negligence.
    Nick & Whitney Maraschiello-Basnett
    Nick & Whitney Maraschiello-Basnett
    18 July 2020
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    We want to start by saying how much we highly recommend Sommers, Roth and Elmaleh for anyone who is dealing with a situation involving medical malpractice. Hilik and the entire firm have allowed us the opportunity to give our little girl the life she deserves. There is no taking back what happened, but they truly turned such a tragedy into a victory. They fought long and hard, and put forth so much time and effort into making the individuals accountable and responsible for the mistakes that were made. They always showed true compassion for our family, guided us with ease, and supported us through every step. This was such a life changing experience with the firm, and honestly we will always be forever grateful and thankful.