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Editorial
Less Is More
Jan 28, 2013

Undertreatment Improves, but Overtreatment Does Not

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, Los Angeles, California (Dr Katz); and Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco (Drs Grady and Redberg).

JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(2):93. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.2361

When we launched the “Less Is More” series, it was with the goal of correcting what we see as a prevalent bias in American medicine: that more care (more diagnostic tests, more treatments, more procedures) is better care. As modern medicine has produced some spectacular interventions, including antibiotics for infections, antiretroviral agents for persons with human immunodeficiency virus infection, detailed imaging through computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging to obviate the need for diagnostic surgery, it is not surprising that physicians and our patients think that more diagnostic tests and treatments are always better.

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