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Complaint filed against doctor accused of misdiagnosing patients

An Illinois doctor is being sued by seven patients who each claim that he gave a misdiagnosis of multiple sclerosis. The plaintiffs are asking for more than $50,000 each in their lawsuit against the doctor and Freeport Health Network. One of the plaintiffs turned out to have Lou Gehrig's disease, according to the complaint.

As a result of the multiple sclerosis diagnoses and the doctor's instructions to the women, they were each paying about $5,000 a month for the drugs Copaxone and Betaseron. The attorney for the plaintiffs says that they were not getting better. The lawsuit also indicates that the doctor is not board-certified in any specialty even though he refers to himself as a neurologist.

In addition to the seven plaintiffs, the husband of the woman who turned out to be suffering from Lou Gehrig's disease is also suing the defendants for loss of consortium, which is a legal term for the services that a spouse provides such as companionship, income and support. He is also represented by the same attorney as the other plaintiffs and is seeking $50,000.

The costs of a medical misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis can be high. Medications can be expensive and do physical harm if they are unnecessary. In the meantime, the patient may have another medical condition that is not being treated due to the mistake. When someone who is misdiagnosed suffers financial loss, physical injury or death as a result of the error, the patient or the patient's family may be entitled to financial compensation.

Source: The Journal Standard, "Freeport doctor, FHN sued for medical negligence", Susan Vela, February 28, 2014

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