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Lack of awareness can lead to medical malpractice in California

Missing an important diagnosis can have devastating effects on a person's health. When a physician listens to the patient, understands all possible diagnoses and orders the proper tests it is less likely that the patient will fall victim to medical malpractice. One California man's experience in trying to get a diagnosis for valley fever caused him to take some extreme measures to get treatment. 

The man was prospecting for gold out of town in a high-density valley fever area. He had previously lived in Arizona and so he was familiar with the disease, which is caused by inhaling dirt in an infected area. When he told his doctors he believed that he was suffering from valley fever, they refused to test him and said that no one in Los Angeles gets this disease. 

He was misdiagnosed several times, with tuberculosis, pneumonia and finally lung cancer. When he got the lung cancer misdiagnosis, he locked himself in the doctor's office and demanded a test for valley fever. The test results came back positive for the disease, and his doctor apologized.

Unfortunately, this individual had to go to extreme measures to get the proper diagnosis. If he would have continued on the path of cancer treatment, he would have faced serious and unnecessary health difficulties due to medical malpractice and the refusal of his California doctor to test him for an easily diagnosable disease. Other individuals who are facing the same difficulties in getting a proper diagnosis may wish to contact a lawyer for help with the case. 

Source: bakersfield.com, "Doctors still foggy on valley fever symptoms", Harold Pierce and Stephanie Innes, Oct. 23, 2017

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