Cervical Cancer Litigation
The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately 12,990 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2016 and 4,120 women will die from it. This is an alarming statistic for a type of cancer that can largely be avoided through early detection and proper preventative care. Annual Pap smears detect pre-cancerous and cancerous cells in women and with proper diagnosis, should significantly reduce the incidence of cervical cancer. Unfortunately, all too often, the Labs that are supposed to evaluate the samples fail to report abnormalities that should lead to life saving medical care. These medical errors present a grave concern for the future of women’s health and is a significant factor in cervical cancer fatality rates. If a woman has been getting regular Pap tests and is diagnosed with Cervical Cancer or other abnormalities, there is a high chance that there was a misread Pap in the prior years.
What is most disconcerting about these trends is that the Labs often fail to inform patients of misdiagnosis, even when the errors have devastating consequences. When abnormal cells are detected in a patient, federal law requires that the Lab review its records from the previous five years to see if abnormalities were present in past tests. However, except in very rare circumstances, the law does not require the Lab to disclose to the patient if they find evidence of abnormal cells in these records. This means that a lab may have failed to identify and inform the patient of pre-cancerous or cancerous cells, allowing the cells to mutate for months or even years, increasing the spread of cancer.
Have you been diagnosed with cervical cancer? Did your doctor look back at your past lab results? Contact us to have a pathologist review your records and determine if you are a victim of cervical cancer misdiagnosis.