Failure to Diagnose Cervical Uterine Cancer
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Cervical cancer, when detected in the early stages, responds well to treatment. The Pap-smear test is in an extremely reliable way to detect cervical cancer. Why then do so many women suffer from cervical or uterine cancer which advances until the opportunity for effective treatment has gone by? This is generally due to a misread Pap smear, an improperly performed pelvic examination that resulted in delayed treatment of cervical cancer, or a misdiagnosis may constitute negligence on the part of the gynecologist, the laboratory pathologist, or the laboratory.
Uterine and endometrial cancers are cancers that form in the tissue lining the uterus (the small, hollow, pear-shaped organ in a woman’s pelvis in which a baby grows). Most endometrial cancers are adenocarcinomas (cancers that begin in cells that make and release mucus and other fluids). Endometrial and uterine cancers can often be diagnosed in their earliest stages. That is because early onset of the disease often results in clear symptoms. Women with this type of cancer will typically bleed in between menstrual cycles. Bleeding can also occur in post-menopausal women whose periods have stopped. Other symptoms of uterine cancer include: pelvic pain, pain during intercourse, and unintended weight loss.
There are also certain risk factors associated with uterine cancer. When one or more of these factors is present, along with other significant symptoms like vaginal discharge or bleeding between periods, proper screening for uterine and endometrial cancer should be performed. Some of the more common risk factors are: Never having been pregnant, irregular ovulation, obesity, high fat diet, diabetes and advanced age.
While certain tests, such as, transvaginal ultrasound or an MRI of the pelvis are helpful in making the diagnosis of uterine cancer, if uterine cancer is truly suspected, an endometrial biopsy should be performed to make the definitive diagnosis. As with most types of malignancies, the key to defeating cancer and putting it into remission is early detection. Therefore, doctors need to be mindful of the symptoms of uterine and endometrial cancer, and the tests available to help diagnose these diseases before they become more advanced.
If you feel your physician has made errors when it comes to your care, you can do something about it. Contact the experienced cancer lawyers at the O’Keefe firm. When a doctor was in a position to detect cervical cancer early and failed to do so, you and your family may be entitled to recover damages. If your family has suffered a loss due to a delayed diagnosis or failure to diagnose cervical or uterine cancer and you would like a case evaluation, please contact us and arrange a free consultation