A heart attack is a permanent injury to the heart muscle resulting from a sudden or prolonged lack of oxygen filled blood. It usually results when there is a blood clot in the coronary artery, a blood vessel that supplies blood to part of the heart muscle. Other causes of decreased blood flow to the heart are atherosclerosis, or the narrowing of a blood vessel due to plaque build-up, and coronary artery spasm. If the damaged area is extensive, a heart attack can be fatal.
Contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney to handle your failure to diagnose heart attack lawsuit.
Over one million Americans suffer heart attacks each year. It is the leading cause of death in the United States. Timely care for heart attack victims could save the lives of many and save others from long-term disabilities. Yet, tragically, heart attacks are often misdiagnosed. Some doctors misdiagnose heart attacks in younger adults and women because they consider the typical heart attack victim to be an older male. But older males are also often misdiagnosed, even in the emergency department!
The symptoms of a complete cardiac arrest tend to be obvious and extreme. But many heart attack victims experience no symptoms at all. Heart attacks in older adults, women, and those with diabetes tend to be less pronounced. Warnings may include fullness, pressure, or a squeezing pain in the center of the chest, and increasing episodes of chest pain, lightheadedness, sweating, shortness of breath, fainting, nausea and vomiting.
Because symptoms vary so greatly in scope and intensity, heart attacks are often difficult to detect. Some heart attacks may start slowly and gradually get worse. Or the pain may come and go. In too many instances, heart attacks may be misdiagnosed as heartburns, panic attacks, muscle strains, bronchitis or pneumonia. Fast-paced and overcrowded emergency room conditions also contribute to the problem.
Once a heart attack is suspected, the treating physician will usually conduct tests to confirm it or rule it out. Treatment for heart attacks aims to decrease stress on the heart and restore its blood supply. Invasive procedures such as coronary angioplasty or bypass surgery may be necessary in addition to medications. After treatment, which can be costly on its own, patients may require lifestyle changes and long-term rehabilitative care.
If you are concerned that you or a loved one’s heart attack was not prevented or diagnosed correctly, we encourage you to seek a lawyer with experience in failure to diagnose heart attack cases.
Contact our Personal Injury Lawyers and Attorneys today to find an experienced lawyer specializing in failure to diagnose heart attack cases.