Spinal Cord Tumors
The spine is a column of bones protected by the dura, which is connective tissue. Spinal cord tumors may be malignant or benign. If a spinal cord tumor grows, it may place pressure on nerves, resulting in paralysis, loss of bowel or bladder function, and chronic pain. For that reason, even noncancerous or benign tumors should be diagnosed and removed. If you were harmed because of your doctor’s failure to diagnose or treat spinal cord tumors, consult the experienced Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano to see if you may be able to recover damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit.Spinal Cord Tumors
Spinal cord tumors develop in different areas of the spine. An intramedullary tumor usually develops within the cervical spinal cord. A vertebral column tumor may start elsewhere in the body, but spread to the spine. The intradural extramedullary tumor develops within the dura. Symptoms of spinal cord tumors include back pain, neck pain, weakness in the limbs, and loss of sensation below the spot where a tumor is located. Your physician may order an MRI, CT scan, or myelogram to identify the tumor. When tumors are detected, biopsies may need to be performed to figure out whether they are malignant or benign and if cancerous, the grade of the cancer in the tumor. When spinal cord tumors are caught at an early stage, the prognosis is more likely to be positive.Liability
In order to recover damages for medical malpractice in connection with a spinal cord tumor, you’ll need to show: (1) you were owed a professional standard of care, (2) your doctor departed from the professional standard of care in diagnosing or treating the spinal cord tumor, (3) the departure caused your injuries, and (4) you sustained actual damages.
The professional standard of care depends on what other reasonable doctors in the same specialty and geographic region as the defendant would have done when faced with similar circumstances. For instance, if your doctor failed to order medical imaging when a reasonably competent primary care physician in Syracuse would done so in response to your symptoms, your doctor may have departed from the professional standard of care. In most cases, your lawyer will retain an expert in the same specialty as your doctor even before filing suit to determine whether your claim has merit and also meet a New York legal requirement that a certificate of merit be filed with your complaint.Failure to Diagnose Spinal Cord Tumors or Misdiagnosis
A surgeon may be able to remove a spinal cord tumor through surgery. In other cases, radiation may be needed to destroy the tumor. However, some doctors misdiagnose or fail to diagnose spinal cord tumors, resulting in a delayed diagnosis. Failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis can be the result of failure to learn about the patient’s symptoms, failure to review a patient’s medical history, failure to adequately test during differential diagnosis, failure to conduct an exam, or failure to refer a patient to the appropriate specialist. For instance, if your primary care physician dismissed your symptoms and didn’t refer you to an oncologist when a competent primary care physician in Syracuse would have, your physician may be liable for medical malpractice.Failure to Treat Spinal Cord Tumors
Sometimes a spinal cord tumor is diagnosed, but not treated. This may be the result of a miscommunication or misapprehension of the need to remove the tumor. For instance, if your child develops a benign tumor that a Syracuse oncologist fails to remove, it could grow larger, eventually putting pressure on the spinal cord and affecting her movement. We need to retain an expert familiar with accepted professional standards for oncologists in Syracuse to testify that the failure to remove or treat the tumor resulted in harm to the child.Consult a Syracuse Attorney
If you were injured or a loved one died as a result of a spinal cord tumor that was not diagnosed or treated, you can seek damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Our lawyers represent patients in Rochester, Syracuse, and other Upstate New York cities. These cities include Oswego, Lyons, Oneida, Cooperstown, Binghamton, Auburn, Canandaigua, Wampsville, Watertown, Ithaca, Utica, Elmira, Lowville and Herkimer. Call DeFrancisco & Falgiatano at 315-479-9000 or complete our online form.