Your Cancer treatment tends to be most effective when identified early. This means that a delay in the diagnosis of cancer can affect your chance of survival and recovery.
Here are four potential reasons for delays in your cancer diagnosis.
Thoroughness of exams
Your delayed diagnosis could stem from a lack of thoroughness in the tests and exams your doctor ordered. If the necessary information to diagnose your condition as cancer is unavailable, a delayed referral to a cancer specialist may occur.
Misinterpretation of symptoms
If your physician misinterpreted or ignored your symptoms, there is a chance of delay in a cancer diagnosis. As a result, your doctor could diagnose you with another illness when it is cancer. This situation tends to lead to you using time and resources on unnecessary treatment, while the cancer can potentially grow worse.
Breakdown of communication
There is the possibility that your lab and physician may miscommunicate about an important aspect of your medical tests. It is also possible that a hospital staff member inaccurately relayed information about your condition. These breakdowns in communication can delay your diagnosis.
Misread test results
Tests, such as an MRI or mammogram, are important pieces of your cancer diagnosis. Unfortunately, your delayed referral for a cancer consultation and treatment could result from your physician misreading your test results.
In some cases, the reasons for a delayed diagnosis of your cancer are a result of negligence on your physician’s part. It is important to know that if you suspect your doctor has missed a cancer diagnosis, you can seek a second opinion.