Are You Getting Unnecessary Medical Tests?

April 4, 2012 Updated Apr 4, 2012 at 9:31 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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April 4, 2012 Updated Apr 4, 2012 at 9:31 PM EDT


(WKBW/ABC News) It's OK for your doctor to run tests for what's ailing you, but sometimes doctors can order too many tests or unnecessary ones, increasing patient discomfort and also driving up already spiraling health care costs.

Consumer Reports teamed up with the American Board of Internal Medicine to take a thorough look at medical tests and figure out which ones are not necessary.

They came up with the following list of unnecessary tests:

1.) Automatically including stress tests in the annual check-up

2.) Performing chest x-rays right before outpatient surgery

3.) Ordering an imaging test for uncomplicated low back pain

4.) Repeating colonoscopies in less than ten years, especially when the first one came back negative

5.) Using dexa-x-ray bone mineral density tests in osteoporosis screening for women under the age of 65 and men under 70

Patients are encouraged to question doctors who order those tests.

That conversation may stop needless medical tests and reduce the cost of health care for everyone.

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