Most Brain Scans for Headaches Unnecessary

the MPR take:

Despite recommendations against routine headache neuroimaging such as the Choosing Wisely campaign, research has found that it is frequently ordered by doctors for patients suffering from headaches at a cost of nearly $1 billion per year. Published in JAMA Internal Medicine, a study of data from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS) and the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) found that neuroimaging (CT or MRI scan) is ordered in 12% of outpatient headache visits. The authors state that this suggests an overuse and insurance authorization requirements could decrease this trend. 

Most Brain Scans for Headaches Unnecessary
Most Brain Scans for Headaches Unnecessary
headache sufferers are racking up nearly a $1 billion a year on brain scans — and the vast majority of them are probably unnecessary, a new analysis finds. “A billion dollars is a lot for patient reassurance.” In addition to boosting costs, unnecessary scans expose patients to potentially ...

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