Overdiagnosis in Medicine: Dr Justin Coleman

Today’s podcast features Australian GP, writer and thinker Dr Justin Coleman.

Justin is a GP currently working in Brisbane in Aboriginal Health at Inala Indigenous Health Service.

Justin is also a prolific writer – he has been producing great medical writing for about 20 years.  He is the president of the Australian Medical Writer’s Association, a regular columnist at the Medical Observer  and a blogger at drjustincoleman.

In the past he has been responsible for the GP Tips series which has run since 1998 and includes more than 650 ‘handy hints’ that you might find useful in your office practice – a truly wonderful resource.

Justin has more recently been writing a column at the Croakey blog entitled “The Naked Doctor” which looks at the modern medical phenomenon of overdiagnosis, over-treatment and unnecessary interventions.  When I read his recent article on the “pitfalls of cutting edge medicine” it really struck a cord with me.  So ever since then I have been wanting to have Justin on the podcast to share his insights.

I think we just really started to scratch the surface of this fascinating topic.  I do hope he will come back soon and tell us more about some of the specific areas that we as doctors need to be better gatekeepers in the world of medical misadventure.

There are a few articles and papers discussed which are referenced below:

The BMJ series is called Too Much Medicine

The other big series of articles is called ‘Less is More’ at JAMA’s Archives of Internal Medicine

The BEACH data I mentioned is at:  Bayram C, Britt H, Miller G, Valenti L 2009. Evidence-practice gap in GP pathology test ordering: a comparison of BEACH pathology data and recommended testing.

The testosterone article is from MJA 2012 “Testosterone Marketing Disease Mongering”

And one quick correction – Justin  mentions the outgoing administrator of the USA Medicare boss’s comments on the huge waste in the American Health system.  The chaps name is Dr Donald Berwick, and the article that Justin mentions is here in the New York Times.

Onto the Podcast   DIRECT DOWNLOAD HERE    Enjoy,  Casey

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