Thyroid Cancer Medical Malpractice Lawyer Compensation Claims
Thousands of Canadian citizens are diagnosed with thyroid cancer every year. The key to survival is early diagnosis and treatment which is often delayed due to misdiagnosis or misinterpreted test results. Thyroid 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 thyroid 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 thyroid 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.
Thyroid Cancer Misdiagnosis Facts
Approximately 4,000 individuals are diagnosed each year in Canada with thyroid cancer but only about 150 will die of the disease each year. Three times as many women will be diagnosed with the disease when compared to men. The median age at diagnosis from thyroid cancer is around 49 years old. Whites have almost twice the rate of thyroid cancer when compared to blacks and American Indians. Asians have a rate of thyroid cancer that is in between blacks and whites. The median age of death from thyroid cancer is about 74 years of age.
Survival rate from thyroid cancer is actually quite good. With localized disease, around 100 percent of people survive the disease. With regional spread to lymph nodes, the survival rate is about 97 percent and the survival rate for those with metastatic thyroid cancer is around 56 percent.
Thyroid cancer tends to occur in just about any age group. Those who have had radiation therapy to the neck and head area are at greater risk for the disease. People who have had radiation as children are somewhat more likely to get thyroid cancer as adults. Family history of thyroid cancer and a history of having a chronic goiter can increase the risk of having thyroid cancer.
There are several types of thyroid cancer. They include follicular carcinoma, medullary carcinoma, anaplastic carcinoma and papillary carcinoma. Papillary carcinoma is the most common type of thyroid cancer and anaplastic carcinoma is the most dangerous type of thyroid cancer.
The main symptoms of thyroid cancer include difficulty swallowing, a nonproductive cough, thyroid gland enlargement, voice changes or hoarseness, neck swelling and thyroid nodules which can be felt on examination. Different types of thyroid cancer have different symptoms.
The doctor can diagnose thyroid cancer by means of a thorough history and physical examination. A nodule can be found on examination, which should lead to different tests. The doctor can check the serum calcitonin level, which is elevated in medullary cancer or a serum thyroglobulin for patients with papillary or follicular cancer. A laryngoscopy can reveal paralyzed vocal cords. Doctors can do an open or needle biopsy to check for the type of thyroid cancer present. A thyroid scan will use radioactivity to check for cancer. A cancerous nodule will be “cold” and will not take up the radioactivity like normal tissue. An ultrasound, CT scan or MRI scan can show a thyroid nodule.
Thyroid function studies might be abnormal in thyroid cancer. Doctors can evaluate a TSH, T3 and T4 levels to see what the thyroid function studies are looking like. Often, they are normal in early thyroid cancer.
There are many treatments for thyroid cancer. These include surgery to remove the entire thyroid gland. Very rarely would only a portion of the gland be removed. When this is done, the person no longer can make thyroid hormone and they must be on thyroid hormone replacement for the rest of their life.
Thyroid cancer tends to be very radiation sensitive. Radiation can be done to the neck so that the remaining cancer cells are killed off. Radiation can be given by mouth as well. The person ingests radioactive iodine that goes directly to remaining thyroid gland cells and kills them off. Chemotherapy is used in cases of metastatic thyroid cancer.
Anaplastic cancer has the worst prognosis and is usually fatal no matter what treatment is used. Follicular cancer is also fast growing but most patients can still be cured of their cancer. Medullary cancer is variable in terms of outcome but has a higher survival rate in women who are under the age of 40 years. Papillary carcinoma is cured in almost everyone.