A recent U.S. study systematically surveyed 31 reports, giving a total of nearly 6,000 autopsies. Of these cases, anywhere from 6 to 100% showed evidence of misdiagnosis - indicating that the doctors diagnosed and then treated incorrectly, which presumably often contributed to death of their patients.
28% of all autopsies in the study revealed evidence of at least one missed diagnosis, and 8% evidence of a Class I (Goldman criteria) error which means that the misdiagnosis could have contributed to, or directly caused an unecessary death (the most common of which were heart attack, pulmonary embolism, artery blockage in the lungs, pneumonia and aspergillosis). Aspergillosis is a fungal infectious disease caused by toxic molds of the genus Aspergillus through inhalation or ingestion of the air-borne spores (mycotoxins) produced by the fungal growth.
This is clearly a serious issue, and one estimate given for the United States is that 40,500 deaths occur in Intensive Care Units every year as aresult of misdiagnosis. Given that aspergillus is one of the most common of these, (up to 30% of Class I Misdiagnosises - though the paper is not clear on this). Sadly, this could account for up to 13,000 potentially preventable deaths a year, had patients been properly diagnosed and then treated for the correct condition. For a rare infection such as aspergillosis, that number of deaths would represent a substantial increase in the number of recorded fatal infections per year.
This suggests several causes of underdiagnoseses, but the principle factor is suggested to be the lack of autopsies carried out to check Clinicians original diagnosis - the rate of autopsies carried out for this purpose has been steadily falling over many years, in many countries, including the United States and Europe.
Aspergillus is the most common toxic mold found in the Southeast US in Indoor Air Quality testing and could be directly related to any and all respiratory illness' and symptoms. If you or anyone in your family or business is experiencing respiratory symptoms it would be recommended to have your indoor air quality tested to determine if mycotoxins are present in your indoor environment as this may result in the re-evaluation of your treatment and diagnosis. From sinusitis to lung disease present in any home or dwelling; no matter the age, condition, or construction, it is strongly recommmended that you have the indoor air environment tested for your quality of treatment, providing all the evidence that may be affecting you, and to ensure a proper diagnosis so that all factors and causes have been taken into consideration in your care.