Unnecessary medical tests?

FRESNO, Calif.

Several medical groups, including the American Board of Internal Medicine, released the list, saying their goal is to cut wasteful spending.

For many people, a trip to the doctor's office often means having to go through a multitude of tests and procedures. But, according to a new report, nine medical societies representing more than 300-thousand physicians found some of the most common ones aren't needed.

Shannon Brownlee with the New America Health Policy Program said, "There are real harms to getting excess care and excess tests."

Among the list of overused tests and procedures:

Repeat colonoscopies within 10 years of a first test, which can cost upwards of one-thousand dollars

A stress test at your annual check-up

Chemotherapy for the sickest cancer patients

And antibiotics for mild-to-moderate sinus distress

Dr. William Ebbeling of Fresno practices allergy and immunology. He said, "If they're going to try and come up with these things in a broad bursh, it's going to make for problems."

Ebbeling adds, while it's good for medical professionals to look at cutting back -- he's concerned about what they could miss by doing so. "The rules and the new guidelines miss the specifics that the specialists know needs to get done, but they can't get it done because the guidelines say you can't do it anymore, and then people end up with the disease, it's going to send the price up."

Dennis Divine of Fresno shares those same fears. "The colonoscopy recommendation, for ten years, that seems like a long time to me. I would think somewhere less than that would be more appropriate."

His wife, Karen on the other hand says -- she will just have to trust her doctor. "I'm just going to talk with my doctor and we feel we need a test we're gonna do it, but I also agree you don't need, test after test, year after year."

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