Failure to Diagnose Bladder Cancer Lawsuit

Thibodeaux v. Urological Consultants, P.A.

Brain CTThis is a medical malpractice cased filed by a man against two urologists for failing to diagnose cancer in Montgomery County. It was filed in Health Claims on April 27, 2017.  This claim is the 200th medical malpractice case filed in 2017 in Maryland.

Summary of Plaintiff's Allegations

A man responds to the emergency room at Sibley Hospital because of blood in his urine. He is prescribed an antibiotic and is referred to a urologist. The doctor advises to continue current medication and the man has several follow up visits.

The man continues to have symptoms and is referred to Urological Consultants because of insurance reasons. The defendant doctor does not perform a work up for cancer. It is suggested an additional procedure could be addressed at the patient's convenience. After a year, a cystoscopy is performed. A 1 cm tumor is found in man's bladder. Shortly after, the man is diagnosed with bladder and metastatic renal cancer. The cancer is believed to be terminal.

Additional Comments
  • The most dangerous condition associated with blood in the urine is cancer somewhere in the urinary tract ( kidneys, ureters, bladder, prostate or urethra). Persistent blood in the urine absolutely mandates an evaluation to rule out cancer, as well as to determine the cause of the cause of problem.
  • Her family files this lawsuit alleging that the standard of care for a urologist requires familiarity with the classic or typical clinical signs of bladder cancer in patients and to understand that the most common presenting sign of urinary tract cancer (including bladder cancer). The most common presenting sign of bladder cancer is gross hematuria, i.e., urine that is visibly discolored by blood.
  • Like most cancers, early diagnosis and treatment are critical. Tthe earlier the stage or extent of bladder cancer at the time of diagnosis, the more favorable the prognosis. Bladder cancers that penetrate just one layer of tissue below the surface layer at the time of diagnosis have a 75% five-year survival compared to a 40% five-year survival for people whose bladder cancers have penetrated into the underlying bladder muscle.
  • A cystoscopy is a way you establish the diagnosis of bladder cancer. It's the method whereby you obtain tissue for a biopsy. Presumably, this is what plaintiff's expert will say should have been done.
Jurisdiction
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of Maryland
Defendants
  • Two urologists in Bethesda
  • Urological Consultants, P.A.
Hospitals Where Patient was Treated
  • Sibley Hospital
Negligence

Key claims:

  • Failure to perform timely and appropriate examinations and evaluations
  • Failing to obtain and record adequate history of presenting illness
  • Failing to promptly order imaging and perform other tests to rule out cancer
  • Failure to inform the patient of the risk of cancer and his options in terms of ruling out cancer in a timely fashion
Specific Counts Pled
  • Medical Negligence
  • Lack of Informed Consent
  • Loss of Consortium - Damage to Marital Relationship
Plaintiff's Experts and Areas of Specialty Getting a Lawyer for Your Failure to Diagnose Claim

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