Leukemia and Lymphoma Misdiagnosis

mistakes in prescription chemotherapy

Understanding Your Rights After  Leukemia and Lymphoma Misdiagnosis 


Leukemia and lymphoma are two common types of cancers occurring in the blood. While if treated immediately, some types of leukemia and lymphoma are very treatable, there are times when a physician or other healthcare provider may fail to diagnose and treat the condition in a timely manner. Failure to act in a timely manner can lead to a poorer prognosis, more aggressive treatment and potentially wrongful death. 


How Are These Conditions Diagnosed?


People with these types of cancers may be diagnosed with the following:


  • Physical exam – Patients with leukemia or lymphoma often present with a degree of symptoms. Patients with these illnesses may appear outwardly ill, including appear very pale, may have enlarged lymph nodes, may have abnormal bruising or petechiae. If a physician detects any of these things, it is their job to investigate further
  • Blood tests – Blood tests may show an abnormal CBC (Complete Blood Count), which can indicate the presence of a disease such as leukemia or lymphoma
  • Bone Marrow Biopsy – If blood work is abnormal and suggestive of a more serious cause such as cancer, a bone marrow biopsy may be conducted
  • Biopsy – A person with an enlarged lymph node may undergo a biopsy to determine if there is the presence of cancer
  • Imaging – Patients with suspected lymphoma may undergo imaging to see where the cancer is in the body (i.e. MRI, PET, or CT)


What Are the Symptoms of Leukemia?


  • Pallor
  • Fatigue
  • Increased bruising or petechiae 
  • Loss of appetite
  • Abnormal bleeding
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Weight loss


What Are the Symptoms of Lymphoma?


  • Fevers
  • Pallor (appearing pale)
  • Night sweats
  • Fatigue
  • Swelling of a lymph node that is usually painless
  • New onset of cough
  • Itchy skin
  • Weight loss


How Are These Diseases Treated?


Leukemia and lymphoma are treated in many ways, depending on the type of illness, the stage and age of the patient. Examples of the types of treatment a patient may have include the following: 


  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation therapy
  • Stem cell transplant
  • Monoclonal antibody therapy
  • Targeted therapy
  • Biological therapy


How Can a Delay in Diagnosis or Misdiagnosis be Caused by Medical Malpractice?


  • Failure to properly assess a patient
  • Failure to listen to patients complaints/concerns
  • Failure to order appropriate testing
  • Ordering some testing, but failing to order all (i.e. imaging to identify other areas of the body that may be involved)
  • Misinterpreting test results
  • Failing to review test results once conducted
  • Diagnosis of the wrong condition, leading to improper treatment and a delay in the appropriate treatment being administered 
  • Diagnosing the patient with something more benign (i.e. an infection instead of cancer)
  • Failing to refer a patient to the appropriate specialist (i.e. hematologist or oncologist)
  • Inexperienced physicians without proper supervision failing to identify the disease


A delay in diagnosis of either of these conditions can prove to be fatal for the patient. If the patient does survive, their prognosis may be poorer or they may need to undergo additional unnecessary treatment due to the disease advancing as a result of not receiving treatment in a timely manner. 


Get Help From Our Lawyer Today


If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice contact the Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover.


Our law firm handles cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Sisters, Madras, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, La Grande, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton,  Cottage Grove, Florence, Oregon City, Springfield, Keizer, Grants Pass, McMinnville, Tualatin, West Linn, Forest Grove, Wilsonville, Newberg, Roseburg, Lake Oswego, Klamath Falls, Happy Valley, Tigard, Ashland, Milwakie, Coos Bay, The Dalles,  St. Helens, Sherwood, Central Point, Canby, Troutdale, Hermiston, Silverton, Hood River, Newport, Prineville, Astoria, Tillamook, Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Vancouver, Washington.


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