Misdiagnosis is a situation when your doctor tells you that you have some illness or condition, but it's incorrect. It is common in young and onset of cancers, mental illness, non-communicable diseases, genetic diseases, and other general infections. Misdiagnosis is expensive, painful, and can lead to a time-consuming treatment process that may worsen an ailment, leading to permanent disability or even death. Patients or guardians may help prevent misdiagnosis by:
Describing Symptoms in Details
A symptom is what the patients tell the health provider about what he or she has noticed or experienced in the period of disease manifestation. Be open about that experience or noticeable change in your body when you talk with your doctor about a medical problem. Keep a diary of symptoms manifestation for easy remembering when visiting the health provider. Your doctor is your mechanic, think of how long it can take to have a mechanic find the problem in your car. Tell a short story of your disease manifestation and make sure your doctor doesn’t interrupt your description of symptoms and complaints because a diagnosis made too quickly can lead to mistakes. Being open and honest to your health provider is important.
Having Records of Initial Diagnosis
Your initial diagnosis is very important in future medication and treatment of a disease, keep in mind that sometimes treatments just don’t work, and other cures need to be explored. Have a history of the earlier diagnosis that may be required for the future diagnosis and treatment of the disease. Keep your doctor updated on your health matters. Know your family history of illness, share and remind your doctor of it. Sharing this information with your doctor can help to reduce the chances of misdiagnosis.
Be actively involved in your health issues and understand your tests and the results of the test before proceeding to treatment. Ask questions, and have your doctor explain his or her thought process or even offer alternatives if available. Doctors see many patients a day, ask a question on the earlier treatment, his or her thoughts on the condition, and also what improvements should be done. Ask questions, even ones you think are small issues and not important, this may help your doctor to better understand your ailment. Understand your condition, medication, and all the procedures involved.
Seeking a Second Opinion
Diagnosis is not always perfect and misdiagnosis can occur. Get a second opinion from a specialist, more advanced care than the previous, and don’t be afraid to consult further. Let the doctor look at your case from scratch and your symptoms in your own words and think about your case without being influenced by the conclusions of your original doctor. A second diagnosis of the same ailment can make you feel more secure about your medical issues, while an alternate diagnosis can help you understand that your medical condition is not resolved. A second opinion can help physicians detect mistakes and learn from that experience and improve their diagnostic skills.