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Breast cancer biopsies shown to be widely inaccurate

Many women in Kentucky have had reason to suspect that they might be suffering from breast cancer or a related medical issue. A recent study that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association indicate that a misdiagnosis of breast cancer biopsy results may be more widespread than originally believed. This includes both the inaccurate classification of healthy tissue as cancerous and the failure to detect cancerous material in a sample.

The JAMA study was carried out by taking 100 biopsies and submitting them to the normal processes that a pathologist would use to review the tissue. The pathologists then recorded their observations, including their assessment of whether or not the sample contained suspicious tissue and should be recommended for further testing and treatment. Once that was complete, a team of three expert authorities looked through the samples and checked the pathologists' findings against their own observations.

After reviewing their results, the pathologists discovered that as many as 75 percent of biopsies were misdiagnosed. This could point to an explanation as to why about 20 percent of the 1.6 million women who get biopsies every year in America end up with an inaccurate diagnosis. This may be a major reason why biopsies are no longer considered the definitive test to discover breast cancer.

People who have suffered substantial harm because of a misdiagnosis or other negligent acts may choose to file suit against the health care practitioner and facility responsible. The counsel of an attorney can be important in obtaining expert testimony and other evidence that would support a finding of medical malpractice.

Source: Health AIM, "Misdiagnosis Of Breast Cancer Biopsies: A Medical Hazard," Kaustav, March 19 2015

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