Prostate Cancer Misdiagnosis
Salt Lake City, Tooele and Price, Utah
Frequently, there are no symptoms for prostate cancer until it reaches its later stages. Roughly 40% of all prostate cancer cases are not diagnosed until they have spread to other organs. Therefore, regular screening for prostate cancer is essential if you are to detect the disease at an early stage.
When diagnosed early, prostate cancer is very treatable. However, if not detected early enough, you may lose many treatment options and your chance of survival is severely diminished. As a result, the American Cancer Society recommends that men should go for prostate cancer screenings every year after the age of 50.
Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Test
Your body produces a protein called PSA that is generally found in small concentrations in your blood stream. If you develop a problem with your prostate, it releases more PSA into your blood.
The increased presence of PSA in your blood does not necessarily mean that you have prostate cancer. It can also be due to other prostate problems, such as BPH or prostatitis. Therefore, a biopsy will be needed to conclusively determine whether or not you have prostate cancer.
In a PSA test, a small amount of your blood is drawn to measure your PSA level. PSA levels below 4 ng/mL are considered normal, levels between 4 and 10 ng/mL are considered intermediate, and levels over 10 ng/mL are considered high and are a cause for concern.
Digital Rectal Exam (DRE)
Your doctor will insert a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum to examine the back wall of the prostate. Approximately 70% of prostate tumors develop in this region, making the DRE a relatively effective screening method. However, since 30% of tumors cannot be picked up by a DRE, you should have a PSA test as well.
Prostate Cancer Diagnosis Malpractice
Your doctor is guilty of negligence or medical malpractice in diagnosing your prostate cancer if he:
- Failed to perform a routine prostate exam and/or PSA blood test
- Failed to identify a cancerous tumor in your prostate during a routine prostate exam
- Failed to test for prostate cancer if you exhibit symptoms indicative of the disease
- Failed to order or perform a biopsy when your routine prostate exam and/or PSA blood test results were abnormal
- Misinterpreted your PSA test or biopsy results
- Failed to react to biopsy findings
If you have suffered from misdiagnosis or a delayed diagnosis of prostate cancer, we can help you receive fair compensation for your damages. Please contact G. Eric Nielson & Associates, LLC today to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced medical malpractice attorneys.