Liver cancer misdiagnosis claims

A liver cancer misdiagnosis can be fatal, and even where it is not can lead to serious worsening of symptoms and significant suffering on the part of patient. If you find yourself in this situation, you may be able to make a claim for liver cancer misdiagnosis.

Make a kidney cancer misdiagnosis claim

As with all forms of cancer, it’s important that liver cancer is promptly diagnosed and that the correct course of treatment is applied as soon as possible, in order to secure the best possible outcome for the patient. As such, any failure on the part of medical professionals that delays a diagnosis or the subsequent treatment could mean you are eligible to claim compensation for liver cancer misdiagnosis. Below are some of the more common instances where this is applicable:

  • Where you present to your GP with symptoms that indicate a risk of liver cancer, but adequate examinations or investigations are not performed and the condition is missed or misdiagnosed as something else
  • Where, following a diagnosis of liver cancer, the doctors responsible fail to sufficiently explain your treatment options and the risks associated with each and every one of them
  • Where sufficient care is not exercised during the course of surgery to address liver cancer; this can lead to damage to the surrounding organs or to infection that might otherwise have been avoided
  • Where a misdiagnosis of liver cancer occurs when in fact the patient does not have the condition; leading to unnecessary and potentially harmful treatment and undue psychological stress commonly associated with having contracted cancer
  • The aforementioned circumstances do not represent a comprehensive list of all situations where you may be able to claim for liver cancer misdiagnosis. If you have received any form of substandard treatment in the run up to or post-diagnosis you should speak to a qualified legal expert for advice on the options available to you.

Blackwater Law medical negligence solicitors can offer a substantial wealth of knowledge and expertise in the field of liver cancer misdiagnosis claims. Recognised by the Legal 500 as providing some of the best legal support available in the South East, our solicitors can guide you through every step of the process, from discerning whether or not you have a claim to securing the maximum possible compensation award. Call today, as time restrictions may apply to your case.

Get expert legal advice

Call today and speak to Dominic Graham, specialist medical negligence solicitor. Find out if you can claim.

CALL 0800 083 5500

No win, no fee claims for liver cancer misdiagnosis

At Blackwater Law we understand that a liver cancer misdiagnosis can have a devastating on your family life and on your finances. That’s why we undertake all of our clients’ medical negligence cases – including those for cancer misdiagnoses – on a no win, no fee basis.

We won’t ask a penny from you if we don’t win your case. What’s more, our fees are always subject to tight government regulation, whilst the amount of compensation you might potentially receive has no upper limit. We guarantee you a fair deal every time, and with no risk to your personal funds.

Symptoms associated with liver cancer

It is vitally important that doctors remain vigilant as to the symptoms of liver cancer, as these can often be vague and attributable to other, less harmful conditions. GPs are now routinely advised to look out for patients displaying the following symptoms in order to reduce instances of liver cancer misdiagnosis:

  • Significant, unintended weight loss
  • Unexplained loss of appetite
  • Feeling dull or depressed post-meals, regardless of meal size
  • Feeling constantly tired or weak
  • Persistent nausea or vomiting
  • Sustained pain or swelling of the abdomen or stomach
  • Onset of jaundice
  • Itching of the skin

You should so advise your GP if you have ever been diagnosed with conditions such as cirrhosis or a hepatitis C infection and you experience a sudden deterioration in your health. Liver conditions like these have been known to heighten the risk of contracting liver cancer, and your GP should be able to accurately gauge the risks surrounding this issue.

Who is Most at Risk of Liver Cancer?

There is currently no way to determine who exactly is likely to contract liver cancer and who is not. However certain members of the population are believed to be at greater risk than others.

A significant proportion of liver cancer cases are linked to scarring or damage to the liver known as cirrhosis. Those most at risk of developing this condition are:

  • Those who drink heavily over the course of many years
  • Those who contract long-term hepatitis B or hepatitis C viral infections
  • People suffering from the effects of haemochromatosis; a genetic disorder which causes the gradual build-up of iron in the body over the course of several years
  • Those suffering from a long-term liver disease known as primary biliary cirrhosis, wherein the bile ducts become damage.

Liver cancer is also found in elevated levels amongst:

  • Those who are overweight or obese
  • Those who follow an unhealthy diet
  • Individuals who do not exercise regularly

Avoiding Misdiagnosis of Liver Cancer

GPs should understand the risks associated with liver cancer well, and should seek to avoid misdiagnosis by taking the necessary precautions in line with their duty of care towards their patients.

The path to diagnosis will usually begin with you presenting to your GP with symptoms that could be indicative of the disease. Following this, he or she should perform an initial examination, and refer you to a hospital-based specialist for further testing should suspicions remain.

If you are identified as being at especially high risk of liver cancer (those with cirrhosis for example) your GP may place you on a special Surveillance program. This will likely be comprised of a six-monthly program of ultrasound scans and blood tests, and should help doctors maintain an accurate picture of your liver and highlight any abnormalities as they develop. It should also provide an opportunity for doctors to detect the presence of alphafetoprotein (AFP) in your blood; a hormone frequently found in those who develop liver cancer.

If you are subsequently sent to a hospital specialist for further testing, a number of procedures may be carried out:

  • Computerised Tomography (CT) Scans: These are essentially X-rays of your liver
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Scans: This is where radio waves are passed through a strong magnetic field around your liver to give an indication of its interior
  • Biopsies: Where a small needle is used to retrieve a sample of affected tissue from your liver, which will then be examined by doctors for key indications of liver cancer
  • Laparoscopy: Conducted under general anaesthetic, this is where a small incision is made into your abdomen and a tiny, flexible camera inserted to give doctors a first-hand look at your liver

At each stage of the diagnostic and examination process doctors should proceed with the utmost care and caution. Missing even the slightest detail or improperly recording any findings could contribute to a misdiagnosis of liver cancer, and subsequently a great deal of suffering for the patient. Should you fall victim to such a failing, the impact will be taken into account during the course of any compensation claim for misdiagnosis of liver cancer that you subsequently make.

Staging Liver Cancer

Liver cancer severity is ranked according to stages denoting how serious the condition is and how well the patient is likely to respond to treatment.

Many cancer specialists use a combination staging system known as the Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) staging system because they feel it makes adequate provision for how advanced the cancer is, how well the patient can generally said to be and how well their liver is functioning aside from having cancerous cells within it. The BCLC ranks liver cancers as follows

  • Stage 0: Where the tumour is less than 2cm in diameter and the patient experiences no detrimental effects on liver function
  • Stage A: Where the patient presents with a single tumour measuring less than 5cm across, or three or fewer smaller tumours measuring less than 3cm across, again without reduced liver function
  • Stage B: Where multiple tumours are observed in the liver, but with no adverse effect on liver function
  • Stage C: Denote situations where any or all of the above are true but the patient is suffering from reduced liver function and cancerous cells have spread to the main blood vessel of the liver, nearby lymph nodes or to other parts of the body
  • Stage D: Where liver function is reduced to a minimum and the patient exhibits signs of end-stage liver disease, including a build-up of liquid in their abdomen

Treating Liver Cancer

The treatment path for liver cancer is devised according to what stage the patient is exhibiting in the disease.

Treatment during the earlier stages of the disease can include surgery to remove the afflicted section of the liver, a liver transplant, or microwave / radiofrequency ablation; wherein targeted radio or microwaves are used to destroy the tumour and any remaining cancerous cells.

Unfortunately, liver cancer misdiagnosis remains fairly common, with most cases of the disease identified only when it is too late to completely overcome it. In these instances chemotherapy is utilised to slow the spread of the disease and relieve some of its symptoms, although it does produce side effects of its own.

Specialists in Cancer Misdiagnosis Claims

At Blackwater Law our specialist medical negligence solicitors have a wealth of experience in handling compensation claims for all forms of cancer misdiagnosis. That means whether you’ve been a victim of lung cancer, bowel cancer, liver cancer or indeed any form of the disease we can offer you expert legal advice and support, and could secure you compensation for your suffering. Whether you’re just looking to learn more or you’re confident you have a case, contact us today and start your path to securing justice.

Get expert legal advice

Call today and speak to Dominic Graham, specialist medical negligence solicitor. Find out if you can claim.

CALL 0800 083 5500


 

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