A family is suing an integrative medicine doctor for medical malpractice after he knowingly failed to treat lymphoma, which is a cancer that attacks the body’s white blood cells. The patient would have had an 80 percent chance of beating the cancer with chemotherapy. Instead, the doctor ordered the patient iron shots, antibiotic and herbal supplements. According to the patient’s family, the doctor told the patient cancer was “low on the list” of why the patient’s symptoms could appear. The doctor told the patient the symptoms were more likely caused by mold allergies. Records even show the patient scheduled a chemotherapy appointment, but cancelled it after consulting with this doctor. Two years later, the patient died.
Doctors can be sued for medical malpractice if they fail to diagnose cancer, give a misdiagnosis or there is an error in treatment. In this instance, the doctor knew about the patient’s cancer diagnosis and failed to administer the proper treatment. As a result, he may have his medical license revoked.
A study in 1990 found 33 percent of the U.S. turned to at least one form of alternative medicine. By 1997, that number jumped to 42 percent and people spent $27 billion that year on alternative medicine treatments.
Most alternative medicine treatments or therapies are holistic, which usually means they address the entire person, including physical, spiritual and emotional aspects of a patient. However, “alternative medicine” is a term that seems unclear and can mislead patients into thinking an unqualified doctor can diagnose and treat a more serious illness. The best steps you can take if you’ve received a diagnosis from an alternative medical professional that seems a little strange is get a second opinion.
While alternative medicine practices are holistic in nature, you can still hold the practitioners accountable for medical malpractice. If an integrative medicine doctor fails to diagnose your illness, causes a delayed diagnosis for cancer or you are injured during a treatment, consult a medical malpractice attorney.
The medical malpractice attorneys at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot, L.L.P. fight to make sure victims injured by medical error have what they need to recover. Call us today to speak to one of our attorneys.