Lake Charles
Baton Rouge

Misdiagnosis by Louisiana doctor leads to unnecessary mastectomy

Louisiana medical facilities are known for top of the line medical care; however, when something goes wrong, judges are not afraid to make it right. A recent unfortunate misdiagnosis has landed the medical malpractice victim an award of over $950,000 in compensation. A biopsy went awry when a pathologist reported finding infiltrating ductal carcinoma grade I, even though later scrutiny of the tissue samples showed that there was actually no sign of any such affliction.

The call to action to treat the supposed carcinoma was a major mastectomy. This type of surgery has long-lasting recovery times both physically and psychologically. Compounding that emotional strain was the later news that it was entirely unnecessary. The woman thereafter sued for the negligent care she believed that she received from the doctor, as well as the Louisiana State University Health System.

Her lawsuit maintained that the medical system was also liable for the damages, due to the affiliation with the doctor involved. Post-surgery samples revealed no evidence of the alleged medical problem. This prompted a second examination of the biopsy sample by another pathology agent who found no signs either.

The woman decided to sue the doctor responsible for the inaccurate diagnosis on the grounds of medical malpractice which directly resulted in the invasive surgery. The Louisiana judge presiding over the case found negligence for the misdiagnosis and awarded the victim $964,487 in damages. It is often difficult to place a price on someone's health, especially when they may have been perfectly healthy in the past, and may now face further complications from an unnecessary surgery.

Source:, "Unneeded Mastectomy Lawsuit Brings Patient Nearly $1 Million," David Bernard, Nov. 7, 2012


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