Medical practitioners have acknowledged the serious nature of heart disease for centuries. According to The Atlantic, heart disease is also the number-one cause of death in women in the United States. Despite the tragic toll on families and individuals, however, women have historically been excluded from medical research pertaining to the disease.
The cause of this lopsided focus is likely due to an early stigma that linked heart disease to traits considered to be masculine at the time in which the stigma originated, such as stress, ambition, and drive. As modern medicine advanced to reach a more scientific understanding of the disease, the stigma that heart disease is a “men’s disease” remained. As a result, women continued to be left out of research studies, medical textbooks, and awareness campaigns.
The lack of research regarding the signs and symptoms of heart attacks in women has led to many late or missed diagnoses. Failure to address the symptoms of a heart attack early on can often lead to worsening of the condition and, in some cases, death. Weak research on women’s health tends to hide the risks for female heart attack patients. As a result, women often do not get the encouragement they need to protect their heart health.
Symptoms of Heart Disease in Women
While men typically experience chest pains during a heart attack, women may have entirely different symptoms. Parts of the body that may reveal an underlying heart condition in women include the jaw, arm, or neck. Women affected by heart disease may also experience nausea and vomiting.
Industry Standards for Medical Practitioners
A doctor’s mistake can pose a severe impact to a woman’s health. Some common errors doctors make that prevent patients from getting the care they deserve include failure to…
- Take notes on medical concerns—no matter how minor they may seem—to be used for future reference in light of recurring or worsening symptoms.
- Diagnose a heart attack and quickly provide appropriate treatment.
- Treat a diagnosis properly, following standards that are commonly accepted by the medical community.
- Take medical history into consideration when providing treatment or evaluating new symptoms.
- Anticipate and address common complications following a medical event or procedure.
- Warn the patient of potential harmful side effects of a prescribed drug.
Medical malpractice may also apply to a medical professional who chooses not to follow laws pertaining to a patient’s privacy.
Taking Legal Action for a Medical Misdiagnosis
A lawsuit for malpractice may be in order if a medical professional has failed to provide a patient with reasonable care consistent with medical practice. Ignorance is no excuse for gender biases in medicine, and doctors who miss telltale signs of heart disease in women can be held accountable for inaction. If you or a loved one has received inadequate care or bad advice from a medical professional, you may be entitled to compensation for any damages that happened as a result. These damages may cover:
- Medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Permanent disability
- Wrongful death
Filing a Texas medical malpractice lawsuit can be the first step in recovery from your experience.
Medical Malpractice and Wrongful Death
In the event that an instance of medical malpractice caused a patient’s death, the victim’s relatives and next of kin may file a lawsuit against the medical doctors and other medical professionals, the medical institution, or pharmaceutical companies. Which party is held liable will vary depending on the type of malpractice that occurred and who acted negligently.
Medical malpractice can have significant and life-altering consequences for the affected patients and their families, ranging from worsening symptoms due to missed treatment to death. Medical practitioners must be held accountable for their negligent actions. If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, contact an experienced personal injury attorney to evaluate your claim.