What harms are caused by a misdiagnosis of Alzheimer’s?

Being told that you or a loved one has been diagnosed with an illness or disease with no known cure is not only devastating news, but is also likely information that will greatly change the life of the patient. Even if there is no known cure, a patient in Pennsylvania may be very open and optimistic about his or her options regarding the possible treatment plans offered to them. But what if these treatment plans hold serious risks? And what if the doctor did not properly diagnose the patient?

Alzheimer’s disease is known as a disease that greatly impacts an individual’s ability to recall memories. While memory loss is a huge indicator that a patient is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, there are other illnesses that have the primary symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Therefore, this could lead to misdiagnosis and patients being treated for Alzheimer’s when they are actually not suffering from the disease.

What harms are caused by a misdiagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease? According to one medical study, many patients that show clear signs of dementia are quickly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease by medical professionals. Such a situation does not only leave a patient diagnosed with the wrong illness, but also results in the delayed treatment for frontotempral dementia.

Because these two diseases are very different and have very different courses of treatment, it is important that a patient does not suffer from a wrong diagnosis or a delayed treatment of the disease he or she is suffering. Therefore, researchers have developed a specialized PET imaging test that will better identify the accumulations of the protein beta amyloid, which is indicative of Alzheimer’s disease.

Those that have suffered because of a misdiagnosis should understand that they may have recourses available to them. A medical malpractice claim could help patients pursue compensation to cover medical expenses and losses arising from the incident. A wrong diagnosis could harm a patient in several ways; therefore, it is imperative that patients take timely action to seek recovery for the losses caused by the matter.

Source: Sciencedaily.com, “Dementia treatment delayed due to misdiagnosis,” Feb. 24, 2016