Heart attacks and strokes can have severe complications beyond the initial damage they cause. If your doctor fails to diagnose a stroke or heart attack, subsequent adverse effects attributable to the missed diagnosis could arise. One rare but serious complication from heart attacks or strokes is known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome (RSD), a condition causing extreme pain. If you find yourself suffering from severe, intense chronic pain in your extremities, you may have suffered a minor stroke or cardiac event that was undiagnosed. Immediate treatment can potentially lessen the effects of RSD, but if your doctor missed your heart attack and stroke, you could be suffering from preventable RSD.
If you or a loved one suffered the intense pain of RSD due to an undiagnosed heart attack or stroke, contact our Baltimore attorney for severe RSD from a missed stroke or heart attack diagnosis. The knowledgeable attorneys at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice will evaluate your case and work to hold the medical professionals responsible for your pain responsible. Call (410) 694-7291 today to schedule a free consultation.
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome in Baltimore Patients
Reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome, more commonly known as complex regional pain syndrome (CRSP), is a condition affecting the nervous system that results in chronic, severe pain. The intense pain – usually a burning sensation – will originate in the extremities, potentially traveling up the entire limb. Other symptoms include tenderness of the skin, swelling of the extremities, sweating, and discolored or shiny skin.
RSD is very rare and not entirely understood by physicians, so errors in diagnosis are common. In some instances, doctors miss the signs and symptoms of RSD, subjecting a patient to other surgeries or procedures to alleviate the pain. These additional procedures only increase the pain and discomfort while providing no relief. Any delays in the treatment of this condition increase the risk of an individual experiencing further severe physical and psychological complications. Treatment should begin quickly for the best opportunity for successful results.
Misdiagnosed Heart Attacks and Strokes in Baltimore Residents Suffering from RSD
RSD often occurs after serious trauma or injury. In many of these cases, RSD develops after a heart attack or stroke. RSD could go untreated if your physician failed to diagnose your heart attack or stroke and allowed the condition to develop unchecked.
There are several negligent errors your doctor could have made in misdiagnosing a heart attack or stroke. For example, if the symptoms present in your case overlap with symptoms of another condition, your doctor may diagnose you with that condition instead of a heart attack or stroke. More specifically, misdiagnosing stroke signs as a case of vertigo or misdiagnosing the symptoms of a heart attack as heartburn are quite common. In some instances, your physician may not recognize the signs of a stroke or heart attack, especially if you are not within the average demographics for these conditions or you present with no high-risk medical characteristics. For instance, many young people’s heart attacks go undiagnosed because the doctor might not think to test for a heart attack in a young patient.
Your doctor might also commit errors by failing to order necessary tests to accurately diagnose a heart attack or stroke. If you were experiencing any symptoms or presented any risk of a heart attack or stroke, your doctor should order a coronary angiography, a computed tomography arteriogram, or other tests. Even if your doctor ordered the test, a misread result or an inaccurately interpreted test could result in a misdiagnosed heart attack or stroke.
If your doctor fails to recognize a heart attack or stroke and RSD develops as a complication, you may suffer from atrophy – a weakening and deterioration of your skin and bones – or contracture – a condition in which your hand or foot contracts into a fixed position. If you believe your RSD is a direct complication of your doctor misdiagnosing a heart attack or stroke, contact our experienced Baltimore lawyer.
Liability for Stroke or Heart Attack Misdiagnosis Resulting in RSD in Baltimore
An error in judgment or mistake in diagnosis does not automatically constitute medical malpractice. However, when a doctor’s conduct fails to adhere to the standard of care for medical professionals facing similar cases and that care results in harm to the patient, a medical malpractice claim might arise. In Baltimore, our experienced attorneys will work to prove the elements required to show medical malpractice in your case.
Your doctor owes you a “duty of care” when treating you. The “standard of care” in your case will depend on the quality of care that a reasonably prudent medical professional in the same medical field and of similar experience would provide under the same circumstances. To prove your medical malpractice claim, your lawyer must show that your doctor breached that duty of care, meaning that the actions they took deviated from the standard of care. Finally, you must show that your injuries were directly caused by your doctor’s conduct and resulted in actual damages and harm.
Proving medical malpractice for misdiagnosis is complicated, but if your doctor misdiagnosed your heart attack or stroke, an adverse complication such as RSD can be evidence that helps you prove your physician’s negligence. Our attorneys have the resources and knowledge to vigorously represent you and fight to prove that your RSD was connected to your doctor’s missed heart attack or stroke diagnosis.
Call Our Baltimore Attorney for Severe RSD From a Missed Stroke or Heart Attack for a Free Consultation
Reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome is a chronic, painful medical condition. If you suffer from RSD and your symptoms are more severe because your doctor failed to accurately diagnose your heart attack or stroke, contact our Baltimore attorney for severe RSD from a missed stroke or heart attack. Call the Law Offices of Randolph Rice at (410) 694-7291 today to schedule a free case consultation.