Brain Injuries Aren’t Always Diagnosed in the ER

People don’t want to go to a hospital emergency room (ER), but when they do, they expect an accurate diagnosis. Once they’ve been seen by a doctor, patients expect to have answers and an understanding of their illness or injury. However, sometimes the medical personnel in the ER don’t provide a correct diagnosis.

While emergency room doctors are skilled and want to help treat patients, they have been known to overlook signs and symptoms and fail to diagnose conditions such as brain injuries. In addition, some doctors may ignore or dismiss the signs of a brain injury assuming the incident or event wasn’t severe enough to cause such serious damage. For example, sometimes a person is taken to the ER after a fall and treated for the bump on their head and sent home. Some doctors fail to conduct diagnostic tests such as an MRI or a CT scan to determine the extent of the head injury. A subdural hematoma may have been missed, even though the patient may have complained of a bad headache, sharp forehead pain, and confusion.

The Consequences of Failing to Diagnose a Brain Injury

When appropriate diagnostic tests aren’t ordered in the ER and patients are sent home too soon, they may miss out on necessary treatment that could prevent them from suffering further injuries. As a result of the delay, people can suffer mental impairment, speech impairment, impaired mobility, and paralysis. Not only will people suffer tremendously, but they will typically have to fight to get their claims reimbursed by the insurance company due to the delay in diagnosis.

Because there are serious consequences if a brain injury isn’t diagnosed, you need to know the  possible brain injury symptoms after an accident:

  • severe headaches
  • eye and forehead pain
  • nasal drainage
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • confusion
  • lethargy
  • loss of interest in something once loved
  • memory and concentration problems

ER doctors can fail to accurately diagnose a brain injury, so we urge you to click on your favorite social media icon and share this article with your friends and family. People who visit the ER need to be their own advocate and push for diagnostic tests.