‘Vast Majority’ of Neurosurgeons Practice Defensive Medicine
Extra Tests and Procedures More Likely in State with Higher Liability Risk, Reports Study in Neurosurgery
January 30, 2015 – More than three-fourths of US neurosurgeons practice some form of defensive medicine—performing additional tests and procedures out of fear of malpractice lawsuits, reports a special article in the February issue of Neurosurgery, official journal of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer.
The rates and costs of defensive medicine by neurosurgeons are especially high in states with high-risk liability environments. “Although ordering extra laboratory tests, imaging studies, etc. was prevalent everywhere, it was even more so in high-risk states,” according to the survey study by Dr. Timothy R. Smith of Northwestern University, Chicago, and colleagues.