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Byline: Josh Goldstein
Jun. 1--Fear of lawsuits caused doctors in Pennsylvania to order extra tests, refer more patients to specialists, and avoid complicated cases, according to a study published in today's issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Nearly 93 percent of the 824 Pennsylvania doctors in six high-risk specialties who were surveyed said they practiced defensive medicine, including using diagnostic imaging, such as CT Scans or MRIs, in "clinically unnecessary circumstances." The study concluded that these and other defensive practices had potentially serious implications for the cost of, and access to, care.
The study, …