Which Medical Tests Are Useless? Find Out Here.

Usually, when we go to the doctor or the hospital for treatment or testing, we do what the doctor tells us without questioning their decisions. This is not necessarily the correct approach, because, contrary to what many think, doctors don’t actually provide us with treatments tailored to us personally, since the complaints we come to them with are usually not so different to other patient’s complaints except for small changes that they think are negligible.


In recent years, an international initiative, Choosing Wisely, has begun to promote the quality and safety of treatments we receive by avoiding unnecessary ones. We invite you to familiarize yourself with the 21 treatments and tests for which the doctors received special instructions. Now you’ll also be able to know how to preserve your safety and health better, especially if you encounter an instruction that isn’t compatible with one you’ve received from your doctor.

medical treatments

What is the Choosing Wisely project?

This blessed project began in the United States as an educational campaign for physicians by ABIM, whose goal is to improve the relationship between doctors and patients, to encourage patient care that focuses on the patient’s welfare, and to inform doctors and patients of unnecessary treatment and testing that may even be harmful. The project began in 2013, and since then, each year discussions have been held between senior medical personnel, during which treatments and tests are raised that the practitioners have become accustomed to using without giving them much thought. Various countries, such as Canada, Britain, and Australia, have also adopted the project. The following are some of the most important things you should know.

21 treatments and tests that you don’t have to undergo

The following information is important for both physicians and patients, and it is recommended that you know and remember it for the next time you need to undergo a test or treatment that’s on this list:

1. Chemotherapy can be provided to cancer patients as long as they reduce the symptoms of the disease, but treatments should be reduced if they are painful to the patients, as the pain may cause greater distress to the process of coping with the disease.
2. A person who has suffered minimal head injury does not have to undergo X-ray scanning, as it probably won’t be useful at all.

3. An X-ray won’t help you learn more about the medical condition of a person with lower back pain as long as he or she does not have any other pain.

medical treatments

4. A routine x-ray scan for cancer patients should be given only after a treatment that has helped them - otherwise, it won’t reveal any new or useful information.
5. In the event that a person arrives for intensive care, physical examinations must be done only to answer questions that arise from their condition, and not routinely.

6. People who undergo artificial respiration don’t have to be completely anesthetized. If possible, daily tests should be performed to verify how much anesthetic dosage can be reduced.

7. Children with flat head syndrome don’t have to be treated with a corrective helmet.
8. For children who suffer from chronic constipation, consider changes in diet to reduce symptoms before administering medication.
9. People who are supposed to have surgery don’t have to get to the hospital the day before, as long as they have already been evaluated and prepared before the operation, and in cases of minor surgery, pre-op preparation may not even be necessary.

medical treatments

10. For children with acute or normal bronchitis, a bronchodilator should not be used for treatment unless there is a situation that unquestionably requires this treatment.
11. Children who suffer from a small wrist fracture don’t need a cast on their whole hand. A stint that can be easily removed will work as efficiently.
12. People who have dislocated their hip or shoulder can get sedatives before starting treatment instead of general anesthesia.
13. Do not give a woman aspirin or progesterone to stabilize a pregnancy if she has undergone repeated or unexplained miscarriages in the past.

14. Pregnant women should not be given aspirin to contract their blood vessels.
15. A prostate-specific antigen test (PSA) will not help a person who is not at risk for prostate cancer due to family or ethnic history.


medical treatments
16. Do not use an ultrasound to determine whether the baby is larger than normal at a certain stage of pregnancy if the mother has diabetes.
17. People should have a calcium test only if they have symptoms that may indicate kidney inflammation, bone disease, or nerve-related disorders. In addition, it is not necessary to conduct another test sooner than 3 months after the previous one, except in severe cases, before surgery or if the patient suffers from a chronic illness. In any case, there is no need to repeat this test until 48 hours have passed since the previous test.
18. If an antidepressant that a patient has received hasn’t made a significant change in their condition after two months, consider changing medications.
19. A person diagnosed with psychosis should not undergo CT or MRI unless there are symptoms that may indicate a neurological problem.
20. For women over the age of 45, there is no need for a blood test to diagnose menopause.
21. Use of blood pressure medications to prevent heart disease or stroke should be considered only if the patient's blood pressure is above 140-159 / 90-99, and as long as there is another risk factor.
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