Second opinions: Vital for patient safety
Doctors can make mistakes in diagnosing conditions, which is why many people say that it’s important that you get a second opinion about your doctor’s diagnosis. It’s particularly important to seek a second opinion when you’re facing treatments for cancer or major diseases. You want to make sure that biopsies and diagnoses are correct before starting on a program of treatments that have their own risks and side effects.
Getting a second opinion is fairly common, so you won’t find that a doctor questions your right to ask for another person’s input. If your doctor doesn’t support you getting a second opinion, that’s when you know there could be trouble. He or she should suggest it, and even encourage it, if you are uncertain of the diagnosis or want to be doubly sure before starting a treatment regimen.
Do you have to go to another doctor to get that second opinion? You can, or you might be able to go online. You’ll need to submit your papers online — things like your lab work, pathology reports, and all relative blood tests. The Cleveland Clinic offers this second-opinion service, and it has been running since 2004.
It won’t work for every condition, but patients wanting to know if their condition matches one of the 1,260 conditions it does look for can use this program. Interestingly, the Cleveland Clinic does agree with around 75 percent of diagnoses, but that leaves 25 percent of cases with questionable diagnoses that patients need to talk to their doctors about.
If you’ve been misdiagnosed and suffered injuries or found that your doctor misdiagnosed you because of errors he made that cost you time, money, and your health, your attorney can help you make a medical malpractice claim. Our website has more information.