My Quora Answer to the Question:
Have you ever been treated unnecessarily by a doctor just because the doctor wanted more business out of you?
Yes. But usually the “unnecessary” part is in the testing phase of an encounter.
Medicinal therapies should be based on clinical guidelines, so it's hard to get away with prescribing unnecessary drugs, much less prescribing them to get more money out of a patient. Testing though, is more open-ended. I'll give you two personal examples.
I once worked in an Urgent Care center owned by a physician. Since he also owned the in-house lab and radiology departments, he also ordered way too many tests in order to make more money. It was a true medical scam. If questioned about it by insurance companies, he would justify it by referring to any abnormal findings. There is a saying in medicine that if you run enough tests, you will eventually get an abnormal result.
The second personal example is when an ER doc ordered a kidney CT after I complained of acute onset mid-back pain. I get it: she wanted to see if it was due to my left kidney, but she ordered it without obtaining a urinalysis and kidney function labs first, which are the recommended guidelines. I'm not certain what her thinking was but in my experience, it was probably due to pressure from the hospital system to do more expensive testing.
Surgeries are another story. Past examples of treatment scams included unnecessary tonsillectomies and vein strippings.
Currently, circumcision is the biggest scam.
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