Childhood brain cancers frequently misdiagnosed

On Behalf of | Dec 18, 2019 | Medical Malpractice

A child’s brain cancer diagnosis can be devastating for Texas families. Getting an accurate diagnosis of the type of brain tumor is important because of differences in treatments and prognoses. Unfortunately, misdiagnoses of child brain cancers are common, according to a study.

The study was conducted by researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The researchers used new tests to look at the molecular structures of cancerous tumors that had been diagnosed by doctors with traditional diagnostic methods. They found that many of the children were incorrectly diagnosed with the wrong type of cancer.

Two types of brain cancer, including supratentorial embryonal tumor and glioblastoma, appear nearly the same under a microscope. However, these cancers have different molecular structures, different prognoses, and different treatments. Glioblastoma is very aggressive, and many children who are diagnosed with it do not live very many years afterward. By contrast, supratentorial embryonal tumors are less aggressive, and most children with this type of cancer live for at least five or more years after their diagnoses. A misdiagnosis of one of these two types of cancer might mean that the children receive treatments that they do not need and that their parents are given inaccurate prognoses for their children’s cancerous conditions.

People who receive inaccurate cancer diagnoses may suffer harm from unneeded treatments and worsened prognoses. When people learn that their injuries were caused by a misdiagnosis, they may want to consult with experienced medical malpractice attorneys. The lawyers might review the medical records and what happened to determine whether malpractice appears to have occurred. If the attorneys agree to accept representation of a client, they may work to gather evidence to build a strong case of liability against the doctors and others who are responsible for the harm caused to their clients.