Strokes and Negligent Doctors
A stroke, no matter the underlaying cause, is a medical emergency. Untreated strokes can cause brain damage, leading to a lasting disability, or even death.
While doctors should always be on the lookout for the possibility of a stroke, many are not. In fact, a number of patients who suffer from strokes are misdiagnosed or their diagnoses are delayed before they can get the treatment they need.
Misdiagnosis and Delayed Diagnosis
Strokes most often impact older patients, usually people over the age of 55. They are more often found in men, rather than women. This means many doctors and other medical professionals have biases when it comes to who can suffer a stroke. Oftentimes, if a young or female patient seeks medical help while displaying the signs of a stroke, she will be misdiagnosed, or the proper diagnosis will be delayed, leading to serious complications that could otherwise have been avoided.
For example, one of the most common early signs of a stroke, especially in younger patients, is an intense headache. However, a negligent doctor may hear this and assume it is a migraine and send you home with painkillers, rather than running proper tests and first excluding the possibility of a stroke. That time at home rather than at the hospital, even if it is only a few hours, could quickly allow your condition to worsen, perhaps inflicting permanent damage. That is a why a competent doctor who knows the signs of a stroke will keep you in the hospital and monitor your condition while running the necessary tests.
How to Spot a Stroke
Sadly, there are far more negligent doctors in the world than you realize. That is why you need to know the signs of a stroke. Otherwise, you may be sent home or misdiagnosed when you need emergency medical attention. Symptoms include:
- Difficulties speaking
- Slurred speech
- Sudden vision loss
- Numbness of the face
- Difficulties walking or staying balanced
- Intense headaches
When you suffer a stroke, you need to see a doctor immediately. Remember, you may not know that you have a blood clot before it strikes. Untreated strokes can be deadly, and even if you do survive, you can suffer from serious brain damage.
How Strokes Damage the Brain
The brain is a complex organ, and even minor injuries can have a lasting impact on your ability to function. Some side effects you may experience following a stroke include:
Lack of motor control: Paralysis is possible, but even if you aren’t paralyzed, you could still find walking, keeping your balance, moving your arms, and performing fine motor skills difficult. Even swallowing could become a struggle.
Difficulties with language: This could present itself as trouble speaking, writing, reading, and understanding others. Language is processed through specific parts of the brain, and if those parts are damaged by a stroke, it can impact your ability to process language at all.
Loss of emotional control: Following a stroke, you may suffer an onset of depression, anxiety, and even anger issues. This can take a toll on your mental health and impact your ability to enjoy things that once made you happy.
Onset of odd physical sensations: Sudden bouts of pain, numbness, pins and needles, tingling, or even the inability to feel touch, pressure, temperature, or pain may follow a stroke.
The truth is that a stroke will completely change your life, and leave you struggling with functions that were easy for you before. Putting aside the financial cost of treating a stroke, the emotional toll is enough to leave you in a desperate situation.
Which makes it even worse when it is your doctor’s fault.
Holding a Negligent Doctor Liable for a Misdiagnosis
All medical professionals have a duty to care for their patients. It is never acceptable for a doctor overlook clear signs of a stroke, especially since it is a serious medical emergency. If your delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis led to you suffering serious damage from a stroke, then you deserve proper compensation. Getting that compensation, however, will require the help of a skilled and passionate Denver medical malpractice attorney. We at Puga Braley P.C. find negligent doctors absolutely unacceptable, and we are always prepared to fight tooth and nail for our patients. To tell us about your case, call (877) 433-3906 today. You deserve the best.