Which Medications, Tests, and Treatments Should You Really Get? Recommendations for “Choosing Wisely”

When it comes to our health we often want to know as much as possible. But sometimes there is just too much information on what to do to stay healthy. We get advertisements on new drugs and treatments. We read stories about new tests that will make sure you don’t have a disease or that will tell you your risk of getting it in the future. But many tests are over-used and many medications or treatments are over-prescribed, adding to the cost for patients and even sometimes harming them.

The best health decisions can be made when doctors take time to talk with their patients and patients ask questions rather than just assuming the doctor always knows best. What is beneficial for one person isn’t worth the risks for another.

Consumer Reports magazine and the ABIM Foundation are working with medical specialty societies to create lists of “5 Things Physicians and Patients Should Question” as part of a Choosing Wisely campaign (www.choosingwisely.org). These medical groups represent more than 500,000 physicians. The lists are recommendations from experts that they based on scientific evidence.

We took the recommendations from Choosing Wisely and made them useful to YOU, the patient. You can read the full list here or you can read just the topics that interest you by clicking on the links below.

Recommendations for Men

Recommendations for Women

Recommendations for Children

Recommendations for Patients over 65

Tests and Treatments for Cancer Patients

Medical Tests You Probably Don’t Need

Treatments You Probably Don’t Need

All NCHR articles are reviewed and approved by Dr. Diana Zuckerman and other senior staff.