A Canadian woman who went through six months of chemotherapy after falsely being told she had cancer is suing the doctor who made the wrong diagnosis, CBC television said on Thursday.
Muriel Lavallee, 62, wants $175,000 in damages for physical pain, psychological suffering and loss of salary.
Lavallee went to a hospital near Montreal in September 2004 with chest pains and was told her tests showed she had cancer. In the months of treatment that followed, she lost her hair, shed 60 pounds and became anemic — and contracted a dangerous bacterial infection — but in March 2005 another doctor told her she did not have cancer.
“I was completely destroyed,” Lavallee told CBC, saying she had not been able to return to work and now relied on a friend to take care of her at home. The doctor in question retired two years ago and the hospital declined to comment.
Lavallee told CBC she had one tip to pass on: “Never accept your first medical diagnosis.”