Cervical Cancer in the U.S.

Cervical Cancer in the U.S.

As it turns out, cervical cancer is one of the most treatable as well as preventable forms of cancer among women. This cancer forms itself in the tissue within the woman's cervix. It grows at a slow pace and does not show many if any symptoms within its victims. It occurs mostly in women between the age of 30 and 55. HPV strains are said to be the culprit of 95% of cervical cancer cases. Why is it then that the rate of occurrence and death form this illness remain very high? Estimates from 2009 by the National Cancer Institute reported that in 2009 11,270 women will be diagnosed with new cases of cervical cancer. The reasons for this range from women not availing themselves to proper annual testing for this cancer. Another is that some of the gynecological exams, as well as pap smears, are too often misread or performed incorrectly by physicians. This alone would constitute medical negligence by the health care practitioner, and a patient would have the right to being compensated. This kind of medical malpractice can be very deadly because if a pap smear is misinterpreted, the cancer will grow slowly over time and become invasive. That being said, women should be aware that a pap smear is their best line of defense for catching this cancer in its early stages, and a second pap smear could ensure it was read correctly. A particularly alarming statistics by the American Medical Association noted that 15% to 30% of all clean diagnosed pap smears turned out to actually be cancerous or contain cancer-like cells. It is very unfortunate that because of this medical error it is now one of the leading causes of death and disability for women that have invasive cancer despite regular pap smears and gynecological tests.

The Value In Getting A Second Opinion

Everyone needs medical treatment or assistance at some point. We all have opinions about our doctors, nurses and health care providers in general. East Texans are quick to recognize and appreciate quality care when they see or experience it. However, what all Texans should know is that sometimes medical providers fail to live up to designated standards sometimes causing severe and dangerous complications for patients. For this reason, it's important to let you know that it's okay to take your health into your own hands when you visit the doctor. One measure that you can implement on your next visit is obtaining a second opinion. If you are not aware of ways you can know you have suffered from medical malpractice please read our blog post covering that topic.
Being misdiagnosed is a form of medical malpractice, and this should never occur if the patient is receiving proper care. To ensure that you are never diagnosed incorrectly it is a good idea to ask for a second opinion. The Institute of Medicine reported that there are around 12 million diagnostic errors each and every year. Much more research and attention is needed to ensure this issue is properly addressed.
Here are some helpful steps you can take with you to your next doctor's visit.

  1. Clearly communicate with all of the medical professionals you visit to make sure that they understand all of your symptoms and problems.
  2. Keep notes of all your symptoms and give it to the doctor at your next visit so you have written proof.
  3. Ask to keep all of your personal health records so that you have them for any new providers you visit. Including any and all side effects to medications.
  4. Ask a lot of questions. Make sure that you and your doctor are understanding each other properly.
  5. Get a second opinion if you feel like there may be something wrong with your diagnosis. Or if you want to for any reason.

If all else fails don't forget to consult with your attorney. At Martin Walker Law we truly care about all of your worries when it comes to the treatment you receive from the medical industry. Let us know your concerns with a free consultation today (903) 526-1600