Modern automobiles come equipped with sensors that allow mechanics to easily diagnose mechanical issues. All that a mechanic needs to do is connect a car to a computer and run a diagnostic test, which will reveal any problems. As such, all honest mechanics will tell you the same thing about your car's mechanical needs.
It would be nice if humans could be diagnosed so easily and accurately. If this were the case, you wouldn't have to worry about a doctor making an error. But we are made of flesh, blood, and bone, not metal, fluids and bolts. And while there are some diagnostic tests and tools that can be used for diagnostic purposes, a doctor still must render the final verdict about a patient's condition.
But doctors are human and can make mistakes. As such, if you should ever receive a diagnosis that you are not comfortable with, then you may want to visit another doctor to seek a second opinion. Here are a few instances when a second opinion may be in order:
- You have been informed your condition is life-threatening or rare.
- The treatment recommended is experimental, controversial or risky.
- You have a variety of medical issues.
- The treatment you have received thus far has failed to provide the desired effect.
- There is a wide range in costs among your choices for treatment or tests.
A second opinion is also called for if you doubt your physician's diagnosis or his or her ability to provide the care you need. But unfortunately, sometimes patients will undergo erroneous treatment for a prolonged period of time before realizing the doctor may have made a serious diagnostic error. If this happens, a second opinion may reveal how the first doctor's mistakes caused the patient harm.
If you or a family member has suffered a worsened condition due to a doctor's failure to make an accurate diagnosis, an experienced medical malpractice attorney may be able to help you receive compensation.