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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Personal Injury Law
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  I provide basic personal injury advice to my clients in my own practice.
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My mother was diagnosed with kidney cancer in March of 2011.

Customer Question

My mother was diagnosed with kidney cancer in March of 2011. Prior to the diagnosis for approximately 2 yrs she had been going to her doctor with complaints of back pain that kept getting worse and the doctor just kept giving her medications yet never looked into why the back pain was getting worse. March 2011 my mother was taken to the ER with severe back pain. At that time a CT scan was done and a large mass was noted to be on her left kidney. She was sent to a specialist were she received the diagnosis of kidney cancer. On May 2nd, 2011 she had her left kidney and 14 enlarged lymph nodes removed. Upon talking with the specialist I specifically asked him " could this have been avoided had her family doctor further investigated the back pain my mom was having when she first complained of it instead of just giving her different medications". The answer I received from the surgeon (specialist) was "yes it could have possibly been avoided". Mom passed away Oct2011. How do I pursue this?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Personal Injury Law
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question.

I am very sorry to hear that you are in this situation, and that you are still in shock over your mother's passing. Please permit me to give you a balanced answer, with both positives and negatives, so that you can make the best decision for yourself. Pursuing a medical malpractice suit for wrongful death is never easy and it is not always successful. In terms of finding out liability, you would have to evaluate the medical records with a different medical doctor (or doctors), and see whether or not your mother's daughter acted properly based on the existing common conditions within the profession--in other words if a Cat Scan is generally ordered when someone complains of such pain and he failed to do so, then that goes toward potential medical malpractice, but if based on general medical evaluations such a procedure is not usually ordered, it is less likely to be malpractice. Once and if you can obtain such expert testimony, then you would see if you have a valid claim or not. I strongly urge you to obtain all the medical records that you can, and seek a medical malpractice/personal injury attorney in your area. Have their in-house medical experts review the information, and see if they see it as a good case. If it is a good case, they will likely offer to do it at contingency, but if it is not a very good case or a tough case to prevail under, they will ask you to pay them for representation--this way you will know where you stand. Then you will know whether or not to move forward.

Having said that, this appears to be a genuine claim and one where you should be able to find doctors to agree that the first doctor failed to perform his obligations. But know that you must move quickly, medical malpractice claims have a 3 year statute at most, and 1 year on when the injury reasonably should have been discovered. Therefore there is very little time left.

Good luck.