Over-medicalisation (DS-03)

Discussion session
Saturday 11 May 2019, 13:45-15:15
Room C
Can PT evolve in an era of too many test and treatment options?


The problem of 'too much medicine'— the provision of medical tests and treatments that do not substantially improve health or that cause harm (also referred to as 'low-value care')— has been receiving increasing worldwide attention. The recognition of 'low-value' tests and treatments is rapidly increasing, with professional associations scrambling to keep up by providing 'Choosing Wisely' lists of physical therapy tests and treatments that clinicians and patients should question. Over-diagnosis and over-treatment are synonymous with low-value care and describe how unnecessary tests lead to clinically irrelevant diagnoses, and subsequently unnecessary or low-value physical therapy interventions.


  1. Increase awareness of how understanding the concepts of over-diagnosis and over-treatment in medicine could be used to improve health
  2. Introduce the risk of low-value physical therapy care
  3. Identify areas of physical therapy that are vulnerable to low-value tests and treatments