Whether your prognosis has a long or short outlook, there is no simple way to go through an illness. You may have a long list of symptoms or only a few, but all of them can add significant challenges.
The progression from symptoms to diagnosis can be a long and challenging road. It can feel even longer when your doctor gets your diagnosis wrong. Trying to move forward from a misdiagnosis can be demanding both physically and emotionally.
Here are some tips for getting the support you need to move forward.
Guilt, fear and anger are normal
Your experience with different doctors can be wildly different. One may ask all the right questions to help you describe your situation, while another assumes you will speak up about the details.
Once you get your correct diagnosis, you may find you feel a range of emotions, not just the relief you wanted. Being afraid of another misdiagnosis, feeling anger towards the medical professional who got it wrong and feeling guilty about a detail you overlooked are all normal. As you start to allow yourself to feel your feelings, you will begin to find ways to move forward.
You’ll need some grace
Going through a misdiagnosis is a time when you will need to be patient with your healthcare team as well as your body and mind. Dealing with a misdiagnosis can be a significant trauma, and you need to give yourself time to cope with it.
You will also need to learn what is coming for your changed diagnosis and prognosis. You may have spent significant time understanding the wrong diagnosis; now it is time to learn about your new one.
Dealing with the trauma of a misdiagnosis will be an essential part of your healing as you begin to move forward on your healthcare journey.