Breast cancer is one of the most common forms of human malignancy, and breast cancer misdiagnosis is a common source of medical malpractice claims. Some facts about breast cancer include that it is the second leading cause of cancer death of women, and there are more than 2.9 million survivors nationwide who have survived breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms. The cumulative lifetime probability of developing breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms is 12%, and the probability that a woman will die from breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms is 1 in 36. Additional facts about breast cancer include the fact that Women over the age of 50 years have the highest risk of developing breast cancer. Some facts about breast cancer and causes include:
Genetic Predisposition for Breast Cancer & Breast Cancer Symptoms
Women whose relatives have or had breast cancer have an increased risk of developing breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms themselves. First-degree relatives such as siblings, parents and children have a two to threefold increase in the risk of developing breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms as compared to the rest of the general population.
Gender and Aging
Although men can develop breast cancer symptoms, the American Cancer Society has found that breast cancer is 100 times more likely to occur in women. The likelihood of breast cancer development also increases with age, as 2 of 3 invasive breast cancers are in found in women who are age 55 or older compared to 1 in 8 among women age 45 and younger.
Endocrine Factors for Breast Cancer & Breast Cancer Symptoms
Development of breast cancer symptoms can occur at a higher rate if a woman has an early age of menarche–the onset of menstrual cycle–late onset of menopause, never having borne a child, and late age at first pregnancy appear to be associated with an increased incidence of breast cancer. Prolonged use of estrogens and oral contraceptive (> ten years) may also increase the risk of developing breast cancer.
Environmental Factors for Breast Cancer & Breast Cancer Symptoms
Studies of women in post-World War II Japan indicate that the incidence of breast cancer may also increase with radiation exposure. The most damaging form of radiation is ionizing radiation, a high-frequency radiation that has enough energy to remove an electron from an atom or molecule–enough to create long-term damages to DNA. Gamma rays, x-rays, high-energy UV rays and particles given off by radioactive materials fall under this lethal category of carcinogenic radiation.
Dietary Factors for Breast Cancer & Breast Cancer Symptoms
Fat intake is also thought to be related to the incidence of breast cancer. Foods with high glycemic index (such as those with refined carbohydrates and sugars), grilled meats, high fat animal products, dairy and artificial sweeteners have been shown to increase the likelihood of cancer development. Grilling meats at high temperatures can increase the likelihood of mutagenic carcinogenic compounds like HCAs, while high-fat foods increases the likelihood of hormone-dependent cancers like breast cancer through increasing estrogen and prolactin levels. Dairy can cause breast cancer symptoms as a result of the presence of hormones and chemicals like rGBH and IGF-1, while artificial sweeteners have been shown in studies to trigger insulin release when ingested–which could in turn cause cancerous symptoms.
Breast Cancer Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment
Breast cancer misdiagnosis can also occur when a physician does not fully take into consideration–or completely misses–patient symptoms that could indicate the presence of breast cancer. Common breast cancer symptoms include the presence of a suspicious mass, nipple discharge, breast pain and breast reddening. Erythema, edema and retraction of the skin are also considered potential breast cancer symptoms.
Since breast cancer cannot be prevented, early diagnosis of breast cancer symptoms and treatment of breast cancer is critical. This can be accomplished through monthly self-examinations for breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms. However, when breast cancer goes undetected by a physician, the cancer is given the opportunity to advance to a more serious stage. This failure to diagnose breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms increases the risk of harm to the patient: the higher the stage of the cancer, the lower the cure rate. Cancers of more advanced stages have higher recurrence and mortality rates.
When a medical professional fails to meet the highest standards of care, patients may face life-threatening consequences as a result of medical malpractice. Fortunately, the law allows those who have been harmed by medical malpractice–even victims of breast cancer misdiagnosis or negligent treatment– to seek compensation for losses such as medical bills, lost income and earning ability, pain and suffering, and more.
If you or a loved one has breast cancer and is a victim of breast cancer misdiagnosis or negligent medical treatment, contact Ronemus & Vilensky for a confidential case assessment with one of our medical malpractice attorneys. Our experienced & compassionate New York medical malpractice attorneys will be able to inform you of your legal rights & options, build a strong case and help you get the compensation you deserve.
Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis and Medical Malpractice
A patient cannot sue a physician for the mere development of breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms, but a patient can bring a viable claim for the increased risk of harm resulting from the failure to diagnose and treat the cancer in a timely fashion. It is important to realize that a plaintiff alleging a failure to diagnose cancer has the same burden of proof as in any other medical malpractice lawsuit. The plaintiff must establish the following four elements:
- The physician has a duty to diagnose the cancer in a timely fashion.
- There has been a breach of that duty by the physician.
- There is an injury to the patient.
- The injury is causally related to the physician’s breach.
Once all of these elements are present, a lawsuit for failing to diagnose the breast cancer can be brought to court. The medical malpractice attorneys at Ronemus & Vilensky have successfully represented women or their families in malpractice cases involving misdiagnosis or lack of diagnosis of breast cancer and breast cancer symptoms.
If you or a loved one is a victim of misdiagnosis–or lack of diagnosis–of breast cancer or breast cancer symptoms, please contact the New York law offices of Ronemus & Vilensky to speak with an experienced malpractice lawyer who will fight for you.