Home » Lung cancer: Doctor “forgets” to inform patient about vital findings

Lung cancer: Doctor “forgets” to inform patient about vital findings

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Lung cancer: Doctor “forgets” to inform patient about vital findings

According to “RTL”, a patient raises serious allegations against her former doctor. As Birgit Wilde-Salim writes in an email to the news channel, the doctor forgot to tell her a “survival test result”. She describes the incidents as follows:

  • Im December 2019 Wilde-Salim is ill, worried about pneumonia and visits her doctor. He examines her and also refers her to a radiologist at her own insistence. After that, the 59-year-old hears nothing more from her doctor – so assumes that everything is fine.
  • Then more than two years later, Not in 2021 , Wilde-Salim again suffers from pain when breathing. Your doctor assumes back problems instead of lung problems. He prescribed her therapies to treat them – without success. Finally, the 59-year-old asks him to listen to her lungs. Fears pneumonia again – which her doctor refuses. According to the “RTL” report, the woman from Cologne is not thinking about the X-ray examination from 2019 at this moment.
  • A few months later the shock: Im November 2021 Wilde-Salim is diagnosed with lung cancer. “Only now does the 59-year-old remember that she was x-rayed at the Radiation Institute in December 2019,” writes “RTL”. “She requests the findings – and she is flabbergasted.” Even then, a “shadowing of 26 image millimeters” appeared in the lungs during the examination.

X-ray image shows “26 millimeter shadowing”

The woman from Cologne then requests further documents. The shading is also described there. And it says: “Further clarification by means of a CT scan of the thorax can be offered.” The 59-year-old now believes that her doctor forgot to tell her this finding – and, as she says “RTL”, is now getting legal advice.

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The broadcaster also spoke to preventive physician Christoph Specht. His conclusion is: “The formulation ‘clarification can be offered’ by the Radiation Institute is certainly very strange and is not normally used in this way. But the bottom line is that the doctor can be happy if he is not sued.” Shadowing is a clear warning sign.

He also advises patients to always ask themselves. The fear of a bad diagnosis is often great. However, he recommends: “In such a case, you should always actively investigate yourself.”

Legally, the following applies: “The doctor must ensure that the patient is informed of doctor’s letters with threatening findings – and, if necessary, of the recommended treatment.” Attorney Nicole Mutschke emphasizes this in an interview with “RTL”.

Fortunately, as Wilde-Salim describes, her cancer can be treated well: With the active ingredient osimertinib, which works in around ten to 15 percent of patients and shrinks the tumor. However, the drug also has strong side effects. According to the report, the 59-year-old is no longer able to work. A friend of hers therefore set up a donation page for her on Gofundme.de under the name “Birgit needs help”.

Lung cancer symptoms

Lung cancer is treacherous. All carcinomas rarely cause symptoms when they begin to grow. That is why doctors almost always discover the tumor at an early stage only by accident, for example during X-ray examinations, which they do for a completely different reason.

Only in advanced stages do symptoms appear that could indicate a carcinoma, but for which other causes are also conceivable. Because those affected often find the symptoms so unspecific that they initially conclude that the cause is harmless.

  • Depending on where the tumor is located, it can narrow the trachea or esophagus or block the large bronchi. Lung cancer patients then have difficulty breathing.
  • Patients often experience cough, chest pain, rapid weight loss, persistent pneumonia or bronchitis, and tumor bleeding. Those affected then spit up mucus and blood.
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