Health & Fit: More harm than help? 5 medical tests you probably don't need - - PressFrom - US
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Health & Fit More harm than help? 5 medical tests you probably don't need

21:41  13 april  2018
21:41  13 april  2018 Source:   today.com

What Your Medical Test Results Mean

  What Your Medical Test Results Mean Here are the questions you should ask and the strategies that can keep you informed about your test results. If you’re like most of my patients, you probably assume that no news is good news after a blood test, electrocardiogram, or X-ray. But there is a great deal of variability in how, when—and sometimes even if—medical test results are communicated to you.

Some health exams do more harm than help for healthy people. Many doctors think you don ' t even need an annual physical. So here’s a list of tests that you probably should avoid if you ’re healthy and have no symptoms of the disease for which the patient is being screened.

Here are five tests that you might be better off skipping after a certain age. 1. Pap Smears. If you ’re a woman, you ’re probably used to getting these every Life expectancy aside, patients also need to understand that mammograms have potential harms . For example, false positives can lead to more

Doctor talking to patient in officeDoctor talking to patient in office © Alamy stock Doctor talking to patient in officeDoctor talking to patient in office

While it might seem smart screen for any disease you believe you're at risk for, some tests can do more harm than help when they're used in healthy people who show no signs of illness.

Basically, screening tests that have a lot of false positives can lead to lots of other tests, some of which can be invasive. Further, experts say, false positives can create anxiety and stress while the patient waits for the results of further testing.

"You have to weigh in the potential harm, whether it's financial harm to the patient or payer, emotional harm to the patient or physical harm to the patient," says Dr. Mylynda Massart, a professor of family medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and medical director of UPMC's Matilda Theiss Family Health Center. "You have to think about the downstream consequences."

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  Study Finds Consumer DNA Tests Wrong 40 Percent Of The Time Consumer DNA tests often produce false-positives regarding a person's genetic predisposition to diseases, a study found. Popular direct-to-consumer DNA kits that promise to reveal a person’s heritage and details about their health provide false information to two in five users, a new study published in the journal Genetics in Medicine suggests.The troubling data comes from research conducted by medical diagnostics company Ambry Genetics. The researchers found that consumer DNA tests can often fall victim to false-positives that result in producing incorrect information.

Why you don ’ t need it: If you don ’ t have symptoms, there’s no proof an EKG will prevent heart attacks or help you live longer, according to the U.S. Preventive Services You may expect these tests as part of a regular physical, Dr. Lin says, and many physicians do them out of habit more than necessity.

The problem: The tests are expensive— much pricier than an EKG or an exercise stress test —and a minor abnormality in your heart’s structure (that may never cause problems) could unnecessarily freak you out or lead to unneeded follow-up tests . On the other hand, a normal result could provide false

Many doctors think you don't even need an annual physical.

So here's a list of tests that you probably should avoid if you're healthy and have no symptoms of the disease for which the patient is being screened.

Annual EKGs

Heart risks are often under-diagnosed in women, so women may be encouraged to have an electrocardiogram to reveal hidden problems. However, the United States Preventative Services Task Force recently advised against this test in people who are at low risk of heart attack or stroke. The USPSTF even went so far as to say there wasn't solid evidence for or against EKGs in people who were at intermediate to high risk, but who had no symptoms.

That doesn't mean the tests have no use, says Dr. Thomas Gaziano, an assistant professor of medicine at the Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health. "They are useful for diagnosing conditions, like atrial fibrillation," or abnormal heart rhythm, Gaziano says.

Rats Can Accurately Detect This Disease in Humans

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Some medical screening tests may be lifesaving, but others can cost time and “Screening tests that have been shown to help people live longer or better are an enormous boon to “It’s often cheaper to buy packages of many tests , which incentivizes people to get more tests than they need ,” says Erik

Animals need to used for testing because there is more animals than humans. Lets put this in perspective would you rather have your kid be I do not think that animal testing does more good than harm . There are so many animals dying a year from animal testing on products that don ' t need

Yearly blood tests

"People come into the office for their annual exam and they expect their doctor to order the standard panel," Massart said. "But the chance that you'll identify an abnormality this way in the absence of any symptoms is extremely low."

Massart favors of age-based screening: a onetime screening test after age 40.

"Then, as you move forward, you consider the patient's risk factors," Massart said.

If there are no risk factors, patients should be tested once every five years for cholesterol and once every three years for blood sugar.

"But if you have high blood pressure or you're obese, then testing for diabetes is warranted," said Gaziano.

Whole-body MRI scans

Is there a disease in your future? Whole-body MRI scans are promoted as a way to diagnose diseases like cancer before normal screenings can detect them. The problem, an MRI may "see" something that looks abnormal but may never develop into something more serious.

Early breast cancer may be detected through breath, urine tests

  Early breast cancer may be detected through breath, urine tests The research found that the breath method was able to accurately detect the cancer cells more than 95% of the time with the electronic e-nose. The urine test proved accurate 85% of the time.Breast cancer biomarkers were accurately detected in a new study by researchers at Ben-Gurion University by using two "nose gas" sensors on breath and gas-chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS) — a method of testing substances found in urine.

To help patients parse through the barrage of medical procedures, the ABIM Foundation and The full list is published today, but here's a look at five common tests you may not need . The test costs more than 0, and unless a woman under age 65 has additional risk factors, such as smoking, an

Medical tests can be expensive, and studies show that many people see few benefits from costly screening. Here are some tests you should investigate. Most of the time a careful medical history and a neurological exam (e.g., measuring reflexes) can diagnose the problem. And CT scans involve

"These are tests we shouldn't be doing," said Dr. Lenny Feldman, an associate professor of medicine and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins Health System and co-director of Hopkins High Value Care Committee.

Exercise Stress Test

A recent survey showed that in the last five years one in eight asymptomatic Americans between the ages of 40 and 60 were getting heart stress tests, says Dr. Roy Ziegelstein, a cardiologist and professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

"There are huge costs associated with that," Ziegelstein says. "And there's a potential for false positives that could lead to more downstream tests."

Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test

Most men can skip the PSA test, experts say.

"Over the past decade we've learned that the potential for false positives and all their downstream consequences far outweigh any benefits that might come from using this test," Massart says. "But there may be certain individuals for whom the test is more appropriate, such as men who are at higher risk of prostate cancer. This would include African American males or men with a strong family history of prostate cancer."

While still controversial the PSA blood test can save some men's lives from prostate cancer — for every 1,000 men screened, one to two lives were saved, according to recent research.

Rather than just jump to screening, every man between the ages of 55 and 69 is advised to talk to their doctors about taking the test, according to recommendations released last year by the USPSTF.

U.S. fast-tracks at-home flu tests .
Tests would help people get treated quicker, and could help track flu outbreaks. In a bid to make at-home flu tests as cheap and easy as home pregnancy tests, the federal government said Wednesday that it had invested $24 million with two companies seeking to fast-track two entirely different approaches.The hope is to speed up both treatment and tracking of the annual influenza epidemic, said the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, a division of the Health and Human Services Department."It would be amazing," Rick Bright, director of the biomedical agency, told NBC News.

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