Skin cancer is one of the most survivable forms of cancer if detected early. However, if as a result of medical malpractice it is not detected until later, it can metastasize, spreading throughout the body necessitating more invasive and painful treatment. Both you and your doctor have a part in detecting and diagnosing skin cancer.
Your part is to be aware of your body. You should be especially aware of:
- A new growth on the skin or a change to an existing mole
- Raised red bumps or red, scaly irritated patches of skin
- Bleeding moles or other growths that crust and do not heal
If you detect any of these changes, you should make your doctor aware of them, as well as any family history of skin or other cancers. Your doctor should look at the growth and recommend appropriate treatment.
Your doctor should be able to identify whether cancer is likely to be the cause. At the very least, appropriate tests, including a biopsy, should be performed. He or she should refer you to a dermatologist or oncologist as necessary. We trust our doctors to do this, and in most cases our trust is well-founded.
However, sometimes a doctor can ignore a dangerous growth.
Sometimes the doctor imagines you are a hypochondriac, sometimes he or she is overworked, and sometimes he or she is either poorly trained or just lazy. Unfortunately, the consequences of this kind of negligence can lead to costly treatment and a serious degradation in the quality of your life, sometimes even to death.
If you are doing your part, there is no excuse for your doctor’s failure to diagnose skin cancer. If you have been hurt as a result of a doctor’s negligence, schedule a failure to diagnose consultation with the skilled New Jersey medical malpractice attorneys at Weiss & Paarz, P.C.