When a person in Boston goes to the doctor with a problem that might be cancer, one of the most relieving responses the doctor can give is that it is not cancer. There are times, however, that the issue actually is cancer and the patient is not only suffering from the disease, but was also subject to the doctor’s failure to diagnose cancer. The failure to timely diagnose cancer can result in delayed treatment, the spread of disease and worsened condition. In the most negative instances, it can even led to death when it could have been delayed or prevented entirely.

A 30-year-old man who had gone to the doctor with concerns about a mole on his back was told that it was nothing to worry about. For nine months, the doctors chose not to remove it and perform a biopsy to ensure that it was not cancerous. In the subsequent six months after he’d initially gone to the doctor, the mole started to crack and began bleeding. Eventually, his doctor removed the mole and sent it for testing. It was found to be cancerous. The disease has since spread to numerous other parts of his body including his heart and brain. He has been diagnosed as having stage 4 cancer and is considered terminal.

It happens all too frequently that a patient will express a concern and a doctor will either miss the signs of what the problem is or advise the patient to ignore it. With cancer, one of the most important factors in dealing effectively with it is to diagnose and treat it early. With skin cancer, it is imperative that a doctor pay attention to the patient’s concerns, examine a blemish or lesion closely and remove it for testing when it is deemed necessary. If a person has grown ill because of a failure to diagnose cancer or a family member has lost a loved one, it is important that they know their rights to consider pursuing compensation.

In this case, the man’s prognosis is not good. Had he been treated immediately after he expressed his concerns about the mole, it’s possible that his circumstances would be much different. With the terminal diagnosis, it’s important the he and his family act quickly and discuss the matter with an experienced legal professional to determine their options.

Source: New York Daily News, “British man diagnosed with stage 4 skin cancer after being told mole was nothing to worry about,” June 16, 2014