Medical professionals have a duty to adhere to the highest standard of care when treating patients. Unfortunately, many people who undergo a surgery or treatment are not properly cared for by their medical professionals. There are also people who have suffered through a treatment that they didn’t need in the first place. One Texas woman was diagnosed and treated for Stage IV terminal breast cancer, only to find that this diagnosis was false. She recently won a medical malpractice suit against her doctor.
The 54-year-old mother of four was diagnosed with cancer one month after doctors removed a benign tumor from her breast in 2009. She endured seven months of chemotherapy and was given anxiety medication to help her handle the stress. The mother prepared for her inevitable death by giving away her possessions and making arrangements for a hospice worker to provide home care.
In 2011, the woman was admitted to a medical center to treat her anxiety. One doctor had a hunch that there was a misdiagnosis and testing and scans conducted at the center proved that he was right. A doctor confirmed that she had been cancer free ever since her tumor was removed in 2009. The woman’s oncologist had misread a PET/CT scan and mistakenly thought she had enlarged lymph nodes. The doctor’s huge mistake led to unnecessary treatment and a great deal of emotional stress.
The jury awarded the woman with over $360,000 worth of damages in the lawsuit. Texas law limits liability to $250,000 per claim so the judge will have to lower the award. While no amount of money will ever make up for what happened, it will help her start to pick up the pieces and try to go back to how life was before this tragic mistake.
The Houston Chronicle, “Victoria woman wins lawsuit after mistake had prepared her to die,” Robert Stanton, July 16, 2013