12 Million Americans Misdiagnosed Annually

Ava Lawson | May 5th, 2014

New York Medical Misdiagnosis Lawyer – 12 Million Misdiagnosed What are the chances your physician has misdiagnosed you? According to a recent study by Texas researchers, the odds are shockingly high. Researchers determined that every year in outpatient clinical settings, some 12 million American adults are diagnosed incorrectly.

“Not all misdiagnoses lead to any severe harm, but many do,” said Dr. Hardeep Singh, the lead research author and a patient safety researcher at Houston’s Baylor College of Medicine.  “We can extrapolate that almost half of these could cause some amount of severe patient harm.”

By applying the findings of this population based study, researchers say that 1 out of every 20 adult patients are misdiagnosed during outpatient encounters (roughly 12 million people), and calculated the overall annual rate of misdiagnoses to be just over five percent.

1 in 20 are misdiagnosed every year

Singh, whose study was published in the BMJ Quality & Safety medical journal, told the NY Post that he hopes the findings help promote further discussions about patient safety in outpatient settings, by giving the medical community, lawmakers and patient advocates more data on the prevalence of this problem. Singh’s prior studies determined that many instances of misdiagnosis carried grave ramifications for the health and well-being of the patient, particularly in relation to a delayed diagnosis for cancer, in which life-saving treatments and drugs may be administered too late.

On the other side, those who are the victim of a diagnostic error may be prescribed unnecessary medication or therapy, causing more harm than good. His earlier research also found common ailments that were often overlooked and indicative of more serious health problems. These included shortness of breath, abdominal pain and coughing.

Dr. Jon LaPook, chief medical correspondent for CBS News says the problem is indeed very serious, but has suggestions to ensure patients receive the correct diagnosis. When going in for your doctor’s check-up, LaPook says it’s crucial to explain your entire medical history in a clear and chronological manner, including mention of pertinent medical concerns such as relatives who have a history of heart disease, cancer or other conditions.

Part of the problem, he says, is that doctor appointments are often rushed, with physicians spending just a handful of minutes with each new patient.

Heart attack, stroke, cancer and infections such as pneumonia are some of the most commonly misdiagnosed conditions in U.S. hospitals today. With concrete data suggesting the scope and prevalence of medical misdiagnoses, patients must be their own best advocates.

New York medical misdiagnosis lawyer

If you or a loved one is one of the thousands of New Yorkers harmed by diagnostic errors each year, you may be entitled to financial damages against the doctor, health care provider or hospital in which the mistake occurred. But in order to recover maximum damages for associated medical bills, lost wages, and pain and emotional suffering, you need the experience and legal expertise of a veteran malpractice attorney.

The Sanders Firm offers compassionate and zealous legal representation to those who’ve suffered the consequences of a delayed or misdiagnosis in New York. Our legal team is well-versed in the the laws and legal procedures enacted to protect innocent victims of medical negligence. To better serve all clients in the Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island boroughs, we always provide a free case review during your first meeting.

If you’d like to explore your options for pursuing recourse, we invite you to call us today: 1.800 FAIR PLAY (800.324.7752) to speak with a misdiagnosis lawyer in New York.


  1. NY Post, Odds your doctor has misdiagnosed you? Frighteningly high, http://nypost.com/2014/04/17/your-doctor-has-probably-misdiagnosed-you/

  2. CBS News, 12 million Americans misdiagnosed each year, http://www.cbsnews.com/news/12-million-americans-misdiagnosed-each-year-study-says/