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A new study has revealed that people are at risk of developing severe pancreatic problems after being misdiagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
The study carried out by the University of Surrey established that up to 97.3% of people who had previously experienced pancreatic disease are misdiagnosed, typically with type 2 diabetes. The misdiagnosis of diabetes poses potentially serious health implications given that the type of treatment differs and raises the chance of patients pursuing a misdiagnosis claim to seek compensation should their health have been adversely affected as a direct result of a misdiagnosis.
Type 2 diabetes which is commonly associated with obesity in people middle-aged or older, occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin to function properly or when the body’s cells do not react correctly to the insulin resulting in glucose remaining in the blood rather than being used as fuel.
However, as well as type 1 diabetes there is an additional type of diabetes – Type 3c, also known as pancreatogenic disease. Type 3c diabetes occurs when damage to the pancreas occurs. In contrast to type 2 diabetes, treatment for type 3c requires insulin therapy more urgently.
The extent of the problem was highlighted within the study as it found that type 3c diabetes is becoming more common than type 1, with 205 more people within the sample being newly diagnosed with type 3c diabetes than type 1.
With an estimated 422 million people suffering from diabetes worldwide, the latest study has highlighted the need for an accurate and swift medical diagnosis in order to ensure that the correct treatment is initiated from the outset. Those incorrectly diagnosed are at risk from developing eye, nerve and kidney damage and other ailments associated with diabetes. In instances where this has occurred patients may wish to pursue a delayed diagnosis claim or a hospital negligence claim.
Commenting on the research, Professor de Lusignan said:
“Diabetes and its complications place a tremendous burden on the NHS and it is important that patients are diagnosed quickly and correctly, helping them get the specific care they need…This builds on our previous work that suggests that failure to flag the right diagnosis is associated with lower quality care.”