Click here to skip to this page's main content.

New Feature: You can now embed Open Library books on your website!   Learn More
Last edited anonymously
July 28, 2011 | History

Overdiagnosed 1 edition

Cover of: Overdiagnosed | H. Gilbert Welch

No ebook available.


Prefer the physical book? Check nearby libraries with:


Buy this book

Amazon
Better World Books $6.48 (used)

About the Book

After the criteria used to define osteoporosis were altered, seven million American women were turned into patients-literally overnight. The proliferation of fetal monitoring in the 1970s was associated with a 66 percent increase in the number of women told they needed emergency C-sections, but it did not affect how often babies needed intensive care-or the frequency of infant death. The introduction of prostate cancer screening resulted in over a million additional American men being told they have prostate cancer, and while studies disagree on the question of whether a few have been helped-there's no disagreement that most have been treated for a disease that was never going to bother them. As a society consumed by technological advances and scientific breakthroughs, we have narrowed the definition of normal and increasingly are turning more and more people into patients. Diagnoses of a great many conditions, including high blood pressure, osteoporosis, diabetes, and even cancer, have skyrocketed over the last few decades, while the number of deaths from those diseases has been largely unaffected. Drawing on twenty-five years of medical practice and research, Dr. H. Gilbert Welch and his colleagues, Dr. Lisa M. Schwartz and Dr. Steven Woloshin, have studied the effects of screenings and presumed preventative measures for disease and "pre-disease." Welch argues that while many Americans believe that more diagnosis is always better, the medical, social, and economic ramifications of unnecessary diagnoses are in fact seriously detrimental. Unnecessary surgeries, medication side effects, debilitating anxiety, and the overwhelming price tag on health care are only a few of the potential harms of overdiagnosis. Through the stories of his patients and colleagues, and drawing from popular media, Dr. Welch illustrates how overdiagnosis occurs and the pitfalls of routine tests in healthy individuals. We are introduced to patients such as Michael, who had a slight pain in his back. Despite soon feeling fine, a questionable abnormal chest X-ray led to a sophisticated scan that detected a tiny clot in his lung. Because it could not be explained, his doctors suggested that it could be a sign of cancer. Michael did not have cancer, but he now sees a psychiatrist to deal with his anxiety about cancer. According to Dr. Welch, a complex web of factors has created the phenomenon of overdiagnosis: the popular media promotes fear of disease and perpetuates the myth that early, aggressive treatment is always best; in an attempt to avoid lawsuits, doctors have begun to leave no test undone, no abnormality-no matter how incidental-overlooked; and, inevitably, profits are being made from screenings, a wide array of medical procedures, and, of course, pharmaceuticals. Examining the social, medical, and economic ramifications of a health care system that unnecessarily diagnoses and treats patients, Welch makes a reasoned call for change that would save us from countless unneeded surgeries, debilitating anxiety, and exorbitant costs. - Publisher.

There is only 1 edition record, so we'll show it here...  •  Add edition?

Overdiagnosed
making people sick in the pursuit of health
H. Gilbert Welch, Lisa Schwartz, Steven Woloshin

Published 2011 by Beacon Press in Boston, Mass .
Written in English.

Table of Contents

Genesis : people become patients with high blood pressure
We change the rules : how numbers get changed to give you diabetes, high cholesterol, and osteoporosis
We are able to see more : how scans give you gallstones, damaged knee cartilage, bulging discs, abdominal aortic aneurysms, and blood clots
We look harder for prostate cancer : how screening made it clear that overdiagnosis exists in cancer
We look harder for other cancers
We look harder for breast cancer
We stumble onto incidentalomas that might be cancer
We look harder for everything else : how screening gives you (and your baby) another set of problems
We confuse DNA with disease : how genetic testing will give you almost anything
Get the facts
Get the system
Get the big picture
Conclusion : pursuing health with less diagnosis.

Edition Notes

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Classifications

Dewey Decimal Class
616.07/54
Library of Congress
RC71.3 .W45 2011

The Physical Object

Format
Hardcover
Pagination
xvii, 288p

ID Numbers

Open Library
OL24384101M
ISBN 10
0807022004
ISBN 13
9780807022009
LC Control Number
2010037078
OCLC/WorldCat
610837006

History Created October 21, 2010 · 2 revisions Download catalog record: RDF / JSON

July 28, 2011 Edited by 158.158.240.230 Edited without comment.
October 21, 2010 Created by ImportBot initial import