Covinsky: Needless tests may get in way of palliative care

02/14/2013 | GeriPal blog

Indiana University researchers surveyed primary care physicians about colon cancer screening using different patient examples and found 45% would test a 50-year-old with unresectable lung cancer, 37% would test a similar 65-year-old and 25% would test an 80-year-old person with that diagnosis. University of California at San Francisco geriatrics professor Dr. Ken Covinsky in GeriPal writes that it is difficult to envision physicians considering colon cancer tests for these patients "thinking clearly about the extensive range of palliative services their patient really needs."

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