Tuesday, December 23, 2014

They made a bad rule

Back in 2012, all sorts of doctors were saying there are too many medical tests, standards, and treatments going on for all sorts of disease. There hundreds of recommendations from the official medical societies - Pediatrics, Oncology,o etc. At the time, I agreed with them for the most part. One of them in particular - stop over prescribing antibiotics.

But another one, I am not so sure. I consider it a bad rule. This rule is stop Imaging for Metastases in Early Stage Breast Cancers. They were not people who had walked the walk before they made that rule.

Allow me to use examples here. I have a friend who was found to have a relatively early stage II breast cancer except for the metastases to her liver which made her stage IV. She received the full gamut of chemo and had her liver ablated a couple of times. She is doing fine. But what if they hadn't found the liver metastases? She would be long gone by now.

The claim is over treatment and over imaging raise costs and are unnecessary for most early stage women. But if they can figure out whose cancer has spread and whose has not spread without imaging, then I am happy to accept the change. Until then, women who need the imaging should continue to get it.

Go make some other rules and stop being surprised that doctors who treating these concerned patients are looking out for their patients best interest.

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