What Can Be Misdiagnosed as a Stroke? 5 Common Conditions By Zucker & Regev, P.C. on May 22, 2023

woman holding a hand to her headFor the average person, it can be easy to confuse the symptoms of a stroke as signs of another condition. Doctors, however, have years of training to offer the proper care. When they misdiagnose a different condition as a stroke, the results can be catastrophic. Patients who have been misdiagnosed also may not receive the specific care they need. Any wasted time can make an immense difference in a patient’s outcome. 

If you or a loved one suspect that a medical professional has misdiagnosed a different medical condition as a stroke, resulting in damage or death, then you have recourse. The medical malpractice and misdiagnosis lawyers  at Zucker & Regev, P.C. in Brooklyn, NY, can see if you have a case – and then fight for fair compensation.

Common Stroke Symptoms

Before we talk about which kinds of medical conditions can be confused with a stroke, let’s take a look at the most common stroke symptoms. They are:

  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Changes in vision
  • Drooping facial muscles
  • Pins and needles sensation
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Weakness on one side  

Medical Conditions That Can Be Misdiagnosed as a Stroke

Bell’s Palsy

One of the signature signs of Bell’s palsy is drooping facial muscles on a single side of the face. It may affect your eye, mouth, or brow. This symptom can be confused with a stroke, which causes paralysis of the same areas of the face. While patients should still seek care if they suspect they have Bell’s palsy, it is not life-threatening. 

Cerebral Palsy

The severity of a patient’s cerebral palsy can vary. Some may experience weakness in their limbs or trouble with fine motor skills. Other patients may repeatedly have seizures. Patients can also live with intellectual disabilities. A misdiagnosis can prevent proper care and impact a person’s quality of life. For instance, if no actions are taken to prevent bone or joint problems often connected with cerebral palsy, then patients may suffer unnecessarily.


A medical condition can be misdiagnosed as a stroke due to a common symptom. For instance, some strokes may also cause a seizure. A medical professional who does not look further or who has inconclusive readings on scans may accidentally misdiagnose a seizure disorder as a stroke, inadvertently preventing patients from receiving the urgent, specific care that they need. It also means that the seizures can reoccur, causing pain, stress, and damage to the body. 

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis and strokes can present with similar signs. These conditions can impact your vision, result in cognitive impairment, and lead to numbness. They can also make walking difficult. When a doctor treats your multiple sclerosis like a stroke, you won’t have the exact care you need to manage your symptoms. You also won’t have access to treatments that can potentially delay your multiple sclerosis from worsening. If you believe your multiple sclerosis has been misdiagnosed, contact our Brooklyn lawyers for legal support against negligent professionals.

Brain Tumors

Like strokes, brain tumors can lead to vision changes, head pain, and difficulty communicating. These similar symptoms can also cause medical professionals to misdiagnose one condition as another. In fact, a study of patients at John Hopkins Hospital revealed that 4.9% of those with a brain tumor first received a stroke diagnosis. Because time is crucial when it comes to brain tumors, this mistake can tragically lead to fewer treatment options, increased suffering, or a loss of life. 

Seek Legal Action After a Misdiagnosis

If a doctor has failed to diagnose a medical condition and provide the proper care, it can impact a patient for the rest of their life – or can result in their passing. You may be able to seek compensation for the medical care, bills, and suffering that you or a loved one have experienced. The medical malpractice and misdiagnosis lawyers at Zucker & Regev, P.C. have helped patients and family members in Brooklyn and beyond seek compensation against negligent medical professionals. Since 1984, we have recovered millions for victims and their loved ones. If you or a loved one has experienced a stroke misdiagnosis, contact us or call (718) 624-1211 for a legal consultation.

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Zucker & Regev

Zucker & Regev, P.C. Personal Injury & Medical Malpractice Lawyers

At the Law Firm of Zucker & Regev in Brooklyn, NY, we represent victims of negligence, medical malpractice, wrongful death, and other personal injury cases with dozens of verdicts worth over $1 million. Our attorneys are affiliated with:

  • The American Bar Association
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If you are the victim of a personal injury or medical malpractice case, we want to help you. Schedule a consultation today by contacting us online or calling (718) 624-1211.

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