Earlier this month our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers reported on the growing concerns of some in the medical community about the necessity of mammogram testing for a certain group of women. A controversy is brewing over the effectiveness of the procedures used to detect breast cancer for women in their 40s. The uncertain effectiveness of the procedure at that age and the potential complications from false diagnosis are leading many to counsel against the yearly testing until women reach their 50s at least.
Similar arguments are now being made about ovarian cancer tests, according to a report in USA Today. The report centers on a new study that finds that the screening of healthy women for these cancers often does more harm than good. The research was conducted over an 18 year period and included nearly 80,000 women.
The results which were presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncoloy indicate that women who were randomly screened for ovarian cancer died at the same rate as those not screened. Part of the problem is that the two tests used for the screening are often inaccurate, leading to many false alarms. More benign problems, like ovarian cysts and twisted fallopian tubes are capable of causing an incorrect diagnosis.
Over 3,000 of those women who received false alarms ultimately had unnecessary surgery performed. 166 of those patients then developed surgical complications ranging from blood clots in the lung to infections.
Our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Levin & Perconti understand that there remains much disagreement over recommended testing practices with this and other cancers. However, our lawyers have seen the effects of missed and delayed diagnosis first-hand-lives are lost every day because of these errors. We strongly encourage all patients who believe that their physicians should have detected a serious illness sooner to contact our office and share your story.
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