Despite modest effects from initiatives such as the Choosing Wisely campaign, unnecessary diagnostic imaging remains a substantial problem in the United States.1-3 Significant between-country differences probably reflect largely wasted overuse. The United States occupies top usage ranks, with population rates of annual computed tomography (CT) scans (245 per 1000 people) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans (118 per 1000 people)2 that are 5 and 3 times higher than those of Finland, respectively. With aggressive testing, the yield of useful information increases only slightly. Further, some diagnostic tests generate the detection of mostly incidental findings (“incidentalomas”) with the frequency proportional to the excess of testing performed.
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Oren O, Kebebew E, Ioannidis JPA. Curbing Unnecessary and Wasted Diagnostic Imaging. JAMA. 2019;321(3):245–246. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.20295
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