Gall Bladder Cancer Medical Malpractice Lawyer Compensation Claims
Thousands of Canadian citizens are diagnosed with gall bladder cancer every year. The key to survival is early diagnosis and treatment which is often delayed due to misdiagnosis or misinterpreted test results. Gall bladder cancer misdiagnosis is extremely common and failure by a healthcare practitioner that amounts to negligence is a matter of medical malpractice and entitles the victim to claim financial recompense for pain and suffering or the loss of opportunity for a cure. Our specialist medical malpractice lawyers deal with gall bladder cancer clinical negligence cases against doctors, nurses, technicians and other healthcare providers working in medical practices, clinics, hospitals and all other places where health care is dispensed. If you would like advice about gall bladder cancer misdiagnosis just contact our offices and a specialist medical malpractice lawyer with call to discuss your potential compensation claim without charge and without further obligation. Our medical malpractice lawyers will give you their opinion on the liability of the negligent healthcare provider and will estimate the amount of the likely award of damages there and then.
Gall Bladder Cancer Misdiagnosis Facts
Gall bladder cancer occurs in about 1000 people in Canada each year. Of these individuals about 300 will die of the disease. More than have of all biliary cancers are gallbladder cancers while the rest occur in the tubes leading out of the liver and gallbladder. The rate of gallbladder cancer has diminished over the last several years. Unfortunately, it is not usually identified early; the later the stage of gallbladder cancer, the greater is the risk of death from the cancer. Only one out of five gallbladder cancers are found early without having spread beyond the border of the gallbladder.
Gallbladder cancer occurs when cells of the lining of the gallbladder undergo a change in their DNA so that they grow out of control. The gallbladder is located in the upper right hand quadrant of the abdomen and is tucked beneath a lobe of the liver. It is relatively impossible to feel any small gallbladder cancer by palpating the upper part of the abdomen. It takes blockage of the gallbladder ducts and jaundice to really be suspicious for gallbladder cancer. Gallbladder cancer can also cause pain in the abdomen but usually when it is more advanced.
Risk factors for developing gallbladder cancer include being female, advancing age and being Native American. Signs of gallbladder cancer include fever, jaundice, pain in the stomach area, nausea and vomiting, metastatic lumps in the abdomen and bloating of the abdomen. As mentioned, early gallbladder cancer often has no symptoms at all. The gallbladder cancer can sometimes be discovered after removal of the gallbladder for other reasons than cancer.
The diagnosis of gallbladder cancer depends on a careful history and physical examination. There are a number of tests for gallbladder cancer. A CT scan or MRI scan can show gallbladder cancer. An ultrasound of the gallbladder can show cancer within the gallbladder. Liver function studies can be done to see if there is an elevation of liver enzymes or bilirubin. A CEA or carcinoembryonic antigen is sometimes positive in cases of gallbladder cancer. A CA 19-9 assay can be done to show evidence of gallbladder cancer. A chest x-ray can show evidence of metastatic disease. Finally, an ERCP or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography is a procedure that uses dye to outline the biliary system, including the ducts and the gallbladder.
The survival from gallbladder cancer depends on the stage of the cancer and whether or not the gallbladder cancer was removed completely in the initial surgery. The type of gallbladder cancer also determines survival rate. High grade cancers have a diminished survival rate. People of poor health also have a higher death rate from cancer.
The stages of gallbladder cancer include stage 0, which is carcinoma in situ. This is the most curable. Stage I disease is cancer that has spread beyond the border of the gallbladder. There is stage IA and stage IB cancer. Stage II disease is also divided into stage IIA and stage IIB. The cancer has spread beyond the visceral peritoneum and has spread to the liver or other nearby GI organ. Nearby lymph nodes may be involved in stage IIB cancer. In Stage III cancer, the cancer has spread to a main blood vessel in the liver or to nearby lymph nodes and other tissues. Stage IV cancer is metastatic to distant locations.
The treatment of cancer of the gallbladder is primarily surgery to remove as much of the cancer as possible. This is followed by chemotherapy or radiation, directed at getting rid of any cancer cells that do not get removed in surgery.