Over- and Undertreatment

About Over- and Undertreatment

Overtreatment was one of the major concerns emerged from a mixed method study on ethical issues of dental practice in Iran and Switzerland performed by Ali Kazemian from Iran. Since then, studying overtreatment in healthcare has become one of his main research interests. What recently was noticed is that the coexistence of over- and under-treatment and diagnosis is a significant problem in the health sector, i.e.; double burden of suboptimal care.

Overdiagnosis and underdiagnosis of cancers has been separately addressed in the literature (see the link below). The concern we like to point at is co-existence of these two issues at population, family, and individual level.

This double burden:

  • at population level means unequitable distribution of diagnostic tests which result in oversupply, and possibly overdiagnosis, for some groups and underdiagnosis for others.
  • at individual level means feeling too much concerns for some cancer risks while overlooking some more hazardous cancer risk factors. It could be translated to health-literacy topics.

This idea is worked out and will be a project of Inspire2Live.

View more literature about over- and undertreatment

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