Doctor with medicine

Although appendicitis is a familiar ailment, it can mimic other medical problems and is sometimes misdiagnosed. If in misdiagnosing your appendicitis your doctor deviated from the accepted standards of medical practice and you suffered serious harm as a result, you need more than excellent medical care. You need an accomplished medical misdiagnosis attorney. 

In New Jersey, the well-respected legal team of Nagel Rice LLP is fully prepared to take on your case. Having won over $1 billion for our clients, we are highly skilled and have an impressive record of successful outcomes.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH): “The optimal diagnostics and treatment of acute appendicitis continue to be a challenge.” Too many patients suffer the ill effects of having their appendicitis misdiagnosed as another condition and suffer badly as a result of delayed treatment. Ironically, too many other patients (22.9 percent of those who have appendectomies) are later found to have had “negative appendectomies,” meaning these organs were removed during unnecessary major surgery.

The NIH has found that the rate of negative appendectomies remains high because certain physicians rely on physical symptoms, examinations, and blood and urine tests without confirming their diagnosis with more accurate imaging tests, such as abdominal ultrasound and CT and MRI scans. 

If you have had an unnecessary appendectomy or if you have suffered an exacerbation of symptoms because your doctor mistook your appendicitis for some other condition, you may very well be entitled to substantial damages. And remember, your initial consultation with Nagel Rice is free and we will charge you no attorneys’ fees until we recover damages.

Why Our Medical Misdiagnosis Attorneys Are the Right Choice 

The medical malpractice lawyers of Nagel Rice have the know-how that comes from 40 years of fighting vigorously for the rights of appendicitis misdiagnosis victims. We will take over all legal and logistical aspects of your case by:

  • Handling all communications with opposing attorneys and insurance adjusters
  • Investigating your doctor’s history of any similar negligence or misconduct
  • Examining all medical records
  • Locating and interviewing witnesses 
  • Consulting with medical experts who can testify on your behalf
  • Negotiating a fair and reasonable settlement
  • Fighting for your rights in court if your case proceeds to trial

Common Appendicitis Symptoms May Be Mistaken For Other Conditions

Appendicitis normally begins with mid-belly pain that moves to the lower right side of the abdomen and gradually worsens. If the pain becomes more severe and less localized, it may be a sign that the appendix has burst — a life-threatening emergency. Other symptoms of appendicitis are:

  • Belly pain that worsens if you cough or walk
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Low-grade fever that may worsen
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Flatulence or trouble passing gas
  • Abdominal bloating

Note: Do not take painkillers for appendicitis symptoms without seeing a doctor; they may mask other significant symptoms.

Conditions Appendicitis May Be Confused With if Necessary Care Is Not Taken

Because the above symptoms are common, particularly when mild, doctors have to be alert and careful to avoid a misdiagnosis. All doctors learn this information so there is no excuse for doctors not to proceed cautiously to make sure they don’t misdiagnose appendicitis as one of the following or vice versa:

  • Urinary tract or bladder infection 
  • Severe irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Severe constipation
  • Abdominal adhesions
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Ovarian or testicular conditions
  • Abdominal abscess
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Kidney stones
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Endometritis
  • Diverticulitis

As you can see, there are a great many conditions that mimic appendicitis. All doctors have to be prepared to distinguish, sometimes with little time to waste, which ailment they are dealing with. Although blood and urine tests will help to identify infections, and pregnancy tests and rectal exams may confirm or rule out other conditions, imaging tests are necessary to actually visualize whether your appendix is swollen and inflamed.

It is incumbent upon doctors who think they may be dealing with appendicitis to have an abdominal ultrasound, CT, or MRI scan administered in order to confirm or rule out appendicitis.

Damages Our Medical Malpractice Attorneys Will Fight to Win

The consequences of having a burst appendix with its accompanying peritonitis, or going through an unnecessary appendectomy, not to mention having another unrelated condition go unattended, can be catastrophic. 

Patients whose appendicitis is misdiagnosed can end up with sepsis, a systemic infection that can easily lead to death, having a heart attack or stroke, or being in a coma. We will fight to bring you maximum compensation for all you have suffered.  Depending on the details of your case, we will work tirelessly to recover damages for:

  • Medical and rehabilitation costs
  • Lost income, present and future
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Permanent disability
  • Extended nursing care
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

If your case involves a wrongful death, we will pull out all the stops to bring you the funds you need to pay final medical expenses and funeral/burial/cremation costs and to attempt to bring you justice for your loss of emotional and financial support.

Contact Our Experienced Medical Misdiagnosis Attorneys Today

We will provide you with the legal and moral support you need to recover, and the resources you need to secure your life going forward. Contact us now to find the strong legal representation you need and the empathy you deserve.