When something feels off in your body or you begin noticing unusual health symptoms, you may visit your North Carolina doctor to figure out what the issue is and what you need to do to make it better. However, your doctor’s ability to treat you depends on his or her ability to first make a proper diagnosis, and this does not always happen.
Per Medical News Today, some medical conditions are more prone to medical misdiagnosis than others. Many doctors misdiagnose cancer, in particular, and kidney cancer is among the types of cancer they often misdiagnose.
How often kidney cancer misdiagnosis occurs
Kidney cancer is currently one of the most common cancers in America, but medical professionals misdiagnose many cases of the condition. According to one survey, about 45% of patients who would up having kidney cancer first had their physicians diagnose them as having something else. Of that 45%, 11% had their doctors diagnose them with urine infections. Another 6% had their doctors tell them they had kidney stones.
Why some doctors misdiagnose kidney cancer
There are several reasons doctors often make incorrect diagnoses when a patient really has kidney cancer. Often, this occurs because many of the symptoms associated with kidney cancer mirror those of other conditions, such as urine infections or kidney stones. For instance, many people affected by kidney cancer and kidney stones experience lower back pain, fever or blood in the urine, making it harder for doctors to determine the true cause of the problem.
When doctors misdiagnose kidney cancer, or any form of cancer, it increases the chances of the cancer metastasizing, or progressing and spreading to other parts of the body.