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Editor's Correspondence
May 27, 2013

Repeated Testing and Appropriate Use of Echocardiography

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston (Drs Weiner and Wood); and Department of Cardiovascular Diseases and Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota (Dr Pellikka).

JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(10):935-936. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.395

In an era of increased focus on health care quality and value, appropriate utilization of diagnostic testing has garnered attention. In a recent issue of the journal, Welch et al1 presented novel data regarding an understudied aspect of health care utilization, namely repeated testing.1 They found that repeated testing was common, especially for echocardiography, where 55% of those initially examined underwent repeated testing within 3 years. The most common repeated testing interval was 1 year. These results are in contrast to a prior report of utilization of echocardiography in Medicare beneficiaries.2