The perils of delayed diagnosis Bone Cancer Awareness Week
Bone cancer is a devastating illness and sadly it is a diagnosis that is all too common in young people aged from 10-20 with 400 new cases being found every year.
As with many cancers, if detected early enough the prognosis is often, although not always much better.
The symptoms reported to GPs particularly in younger children are often overlooked or dismissed and consequently it can take much longer for a diagnosis to be made. Typically it can take 4 or 5 trips to a GP for the diagnosis and in the UK compared with other European countries, by the time of diagnosis a tumour is often much larger.
This week is bone cancer awareness week and the Bone Cancer Research Trust is raising the profile of this serious illness.
All too often we see cases not just of bone cancer, but other cancers which have been diagnosed so late that cure is impossible.
Some of those cases will proceed to successful medical negligence claims if it can be shown firstly that the standard of care given to the patient fell below a reasonable standard and secondly if as a result of any negligent delay the outcome is much worse. Unfortunately delay in some cases can result in the difference between survival and death.