“Reasons why doctors overtreat and overtest.” By Robert Centor MD, KevinMD.com

The New York Times recently had an important and provocative piece, “Overtreatment Is Taking a Harmful Toll.” The title is a bit misleading. The article focuses more on overtesting. We test too much and we treat too much. The article, while mostly accurate, does not really explain the reasons for the problem. Unless we can accept and understand the underlying reasons for these problems, we cannot successful correct these problems. Let me suggest the major reasons for overtreatment and overtesting. Our payment system. Advances in technology. Guidelines based on single diseases. Patient demand. Malpractice fears. Marketing from Big Pharma. Lack of information from other physicians.

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