If you are planning to welcome a new baby into your family, you expect your doctors to keep you and your unborn child healthy. Importantly, they should closely monitor you for signs of preeclampsia or eclampsia.
According to the Mayo Clinic, preeclampsia is a pregnancy complication that involves high blood pressure and potential organ damage. If doctors do not take immediate action, preeclampsia can turn into eclampsia, which can be fatal for mothers and infants alike.
Why do doctors sometimes misdiagnose preeclampsia?
Modern medicine gives physicians a variety of tools for diagnosing preeclampsia. These tools only work when doctors employ them, though. Regrettably, because some symptoms of preeclampsia mirror the signs of normal pregnancy, medical professionals might not perform diagnostic testing.
What happens if doctors misdiagnose preeclampsia?
If doctors fail to make a timely diagnosis, preeclampsia can progress to eclampsia. Sadly, it is not uncommon for the condition to be fatal to expectant mothers and their unborn children. Misdiagnosed preeclampsia also can lead to the following complications:
- Detachment of the placenta from the uterus
- Interruption of blood flow to the placenta
- Internal and external bleeding in the mother
- Cardiovascular injuries
- Organ damage and organ failure
As you can see, the risks of missing a preeclampsia diagnosis are extreme for both the mother and her unborn child. Because misdiagnoses are entirely preventable, doctors who make an error might be vulnerable to medical malpractice claims.
Ultimately, if either you or your unborn child suffers a catastrophic injury due to misdiagnosed preeclampsia or eclampsia, you may be eligible for substantial financial compensation.