New York Breast Cancer Malpractice Attorneys
Helping Victims of Breast Cancer Malpractice
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in women, second only to some forms of melanoma (skin cancer). Data compiled by Breastcancer.org estimate that as many as one in eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime, and there will be approximately 276,480 new breast cancer cases diagnosed in the U.S. this year (2020). This is in addition to an estimated 48,530 cases of non-invasive breast cancer. While breast cancer death rates have remained steady and, in some cases, dropped (in women over 50) in the U.S. over the past decade, breast cancer can still be incredibly harmful and potentially life-threatening if it is not detected and treated early.
Sadly, many cases involving delayed diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer are the result of medical negligence. When health care professionals fail to uphold the accepted standard of care and, as a result, fail to diagnose breast cancer, patients can suffer serious and even fatal consequences.
If this happened to you or someone you love, turn to Simonson Goodman Platzer PC. For decades, our New York breast cancer malpractice attorneys have been fighting for the rights of victims of medical negligence, seeking justice for them and for their families. We are prepared to guide you through the legal process from start to finish.
What is Breast Cancer Malpractice?
Breast cancer malpractice refers to situations where a healthcare provider, such as a doctor, nurse, or hospital, fails to meet the standard of care expected in the diagnosis, treatment, or management of breast cancer, resulting in harm or injury to the patient.
This type of medical malpractice can take various forms, including:
- Misdiagnosis: This occurs when a healthcare provider fails to correctly identify breast cancer when it is present or wrongly diagnoses it as another condition. Misdiagnosis can lead to delayed treatment, allowing the cancer to progress to a more advanced stage.
- Delayed diagnosis: In some cases, a healthcare provider may correctly diagnose breast cancer but fail to act promptly, leading to a delay in treatment. Delayed treatment can result in a worse prognosis for the patient.
- Surgical errors: Surgical malpractice related to breast cancer can involve mistakes made during breast cancer surgeries, such as mastectomy or lumpectomy. Errors may include removing the wrong breast, damaging nearby structures, or failing to remove all cancerous tissue.
- Medication and treatment errors: This category encompasses errors in prescribing, administering, or monitoring medications or treatments for breast cancer. It can include administering the wrong dosage, using the wrong drugs, or failing to monitor the patient's response to treatment adequately.
- Inadequate follow-up and monitoring: After breast cancer treatment, regular follow-up and monitoring are crucial to ensure the cancer does not return. Malpractice can occur if healthcare providers do not perform necessary follow-up tests or fail to detect cancer recurrence in a timely manner.
- Informed consent issues: Breast cancer malpractice can also occur when healthcare providers fail to obtain informed consent from the patient before treatment or fail to provide adequate information about the risks, benefits, and alternatives of treatment options.
To succeed in a medical malpractice claim involving breast cancer, you generally need to prove specific elements that demonstrate the healthcare provider's negligence or breach of the standard of care.
These elements include:
- Duty of Care: You must establish that the healthcare provider owed you a duty of care. In the case of breast cancer, this means showing that a doctor-patient relationship existed, and the healthcare provider had a responsibility to provide competent care.
- Breach of Standard of Care: You must demonstrate that the healthcare provider breached the standard of care. This involves showing that the provider's actions or decisions deviated from the accepted medical practices that other competent healthcare providers in the same field would have followed under similar circumstances. Expert medical testimony is often required to establish this breach.
- Causation: You need to establish a direct link between the healthcare provider's breach of the standard of care and the harm or injury you suffered. In the context of breast cancer, this means showing that the negligence directly led to a worse outcome, such as a delayed diagnosis, unnecessary procedures, or an adverse treatment outcome.
- Harm or Damages: To have a viable medical malpractice claim, you must prove that you suffered actual harm or damages as a result of the healthcare provider's negligence. These damages may include physical pain, emotional suffering, additional medical expenses, lost income, and other tangible losses.
Symptoms of Breast Cancer
There are several different types of breast cancer, and the symptoms vary somewhat from type to type.
That being said, breast cancer symptoms often take the following forms:
- A noticeable lump located in the breast
- Tissue that has thickened or feels different from surrounding tissue
- Changes in breast size, shape, or appearance
- Changes to the nipple, including new inversion
- Skin issues, such as dimpling, peeling, flaking, redness, or scaling skin on the breast or on/around the nipple
If you notice anything unusual, schedule an appointment with your doctor. Your doctor should perform an evaluation and, from there, may order additional tests or refer you to a specialist. If your doctor does not believe that you need any further testing or treatment, do not hesitate to get a second opinion.
Failure to Diagnose Breast Cancer
Healthcare providers should be aware of signs and symptoms of breast cancer, including less-common symptoms. While certain factors may increase a person’s risk of developing breast cancer, doctors should not rule out breast cancer in patients who do not exhibit these warning signs.
Unfortunately, healthcare providers fail to diagnose breast cancer all too often. They may fail to order necessary tests or they may misread test results. Additionally, a radiologist or pathologist may act negligently, leading to mistakes in lab results and analysis or missed signs of cancer.
Women with dense breasts have always been at risk for false-negative mammograms and delayed diagnosis of cancer. One study found that in women with dense breasts, adding a simple breast ultrasound to annual screening can find almost 30% more cancers than mammograms alone. Of note, ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves rather than radiation to image the inside of the breast, so that adding this test does not increase radiation exposure.
The key to fighting invasive and potentially lethal breast cancer, as well as other cancers, is finding it before it spreads to lymph nodes. Properly read mammograms and ultrasounds can help to make an early, life-saving and perhaps breast-saving diagnosis.
If you believe that you or your loved one suffered because of a medical professional’s failure to timely diagnose breast cancer or as a result of misdiagnosis, we can help.
Turn to a Trusted, Award-Winning Team
Medical malpractice and negligence are never acceptable, especially when it involves misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose breast cancer leading to serious complications, injuries, or death. At Simonson Goodman Platzer PC, we fight to hold negligent medical providers accountable for the harm they cause and work to recover the rightful compensation victims and their loved ones are owed.
Over our decades in practice, we have successfully handled 98% of the cases we have taken on and, to date, our attorneys have recovered more than $200 million for our clients. We understand the challenges you and your family are facing and are ready to fight for the justice you deserve.
$87 Million Work Accident Verdict
The firm won $87 million in the Bronx County Supreme Court for a laborer who was left paralyzed as a result of a work accident in March 2004.
$18 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement
$18,000,000 verdict on behalf of a twin born after a long delay with a severe brain injury-hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy.
$7.9 Million Medical Malpractice Verdict
$7,900,000 verdict for failure to monitor glucose levels in post CABG patient leads to death of 47 year old leaving a wife and two children.
$7.5 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement
$7,500,000 recovery for a baby who was seriously brain-damaged at the time of his birth. Due to a delay in delivery, the baby lost vital oxygen to his brain and develop cerebral palsy.
$6.4 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement
$6,400,000 recovery for a young woman’s pregnancy that was mishandled before she went into labor leading to seizures with resultant brain damage.
The attorneys were kind, accommodating and professional. I couldn’t be happier with the settlement they achieved for me.Inbar V.
They have done an amazing job to win my case without even going to the court.Sezgin T.
Highly recommend!! I had the pleasure of working with Paul Simonson during the worst time of my life. He is knowledgeable, professional & he truly cares. When other attorneys turned down my case Mr. Simonson got results! I will be forever grateful.Dawn M.
I would highly recommend this firm. Ted knows the law and did a great job.Dana
They were honest and clear about the process of bringing a lawsuit forward and managed my expectations.Nate G.
Thank you, Mr. Goodman and Mr. Simonson very much for looking out for me and always having my best interest at heart!Naresh T.
Based on my experience with this firm, their name should be empathy, compassion and brilliance. Their kindness and attention to detail was second to none. I truly cannot say enough good things about Paul, Ted and this firm. The gratitude I feel towards them is immeasurable.Nic R.
Ted Goodman was amazing in the courtroom and eloquently argued my case. If I could give them 10 stars I would, they truly changed my life. There are no amount of words that can show how grateful I am for all they have done.Ashley W.