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Most Common Medical Malpractice Claims for Missed Cancer, Heart Attacks
Most Common Medical Malpractice Claims for Missed Cancer, Heart Attacks

News Inferno; July 26, 2013

A new, large study reviewed medical malpractice claims and found claims are most commonly associated with missed cancer and heart attack claims.

The study appears in the July 18th issue of BMJ Open and was conducted by Irish researchers who reviewed more than 7,150 journal papers concerning medical malpractice claims, according to CBS News. The researchers were specifically reviewing claims brought against primary care physicians as this practice discipline typically represents the initial line of care among patients.

Of the studies reviewed, the team deemed 34 journal articles appropriate for the research; 15 from the United States-based, nine from Britain, seven from Australia, two from France, and one from Canada, according to CBS News. The researchers discovered that the most commonly reported medical malpractice claims involved missed diagnoses, which amounted to 26-63 percent of the total claims, depending on the study. Death topped the list of common consequences under claims for missed diagnosis and occurred in 15-48 percent of the cases.

The study, conducted by Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Medical School and Trinity College Dublin reported that the most prevalent missed diagnoses in adults were cancer and heart attack, followed by appendicitis, ectopic pregnancy, and bone fractures. In children, most commonly missed diagnoses were related to meningitis and cancers, CBS News reported.

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