Your doctor or GP is the usual route for referral for specialist investigation. Many claims resulting in Doctors being sued can result from your Doctor failing to refer you to a Consultant
Doctors can also be sued for not recognising there is an emergency situation and that they should send you straight to the hospital.
Claims may involve failure to recognise an acute condition that requires emergency assessment: acute painful abdomen, meningitis, cauda equina, acute chest pain.
Claims against Doctors may include failure to refer where symptoms raise the index of suspicion of cancer, “red flags” for example visible blood in urine, breast lump, blood in stool with a change in bowel habit; persistent cough.
Cancer can affect any organ of the body. Different cancers typically present with different symptoms; some symptoms are considered “red flag” for certain cancers and require urgent referral. For example, blood in urine is a red flag for urinary tract cancer; a breast lump is a red flag for breast cancer. Delay in diagnosing cancer can result in loss of cure so the cancer is incurable; worse symptoms and more extensive treatment; reduction in life expectancy.
Other claims against general practitioners may include prescribing errors, giving inappropriate medication, incorrect injections being given or complications arising from minor procedures such as burns from wart removals.