Defensive Medicine (ED Example) on CBS
CBS) It started as a simple stomach ache, but Alexandra Varipapa, a sophomore at the University of Richmond, decided to go to the emergency room.
There, doctors ordered a full CT scan, a radiation imaging test, which found a harmless ovarian cyst. She never questioned the CT scan, CBS News correspondent Wyatt Andrews reports.
But her father did - when he got the $8,500 bill, $6,500 of which was that CT scan.
“I was pretty flabbergasted,” said Robert Varipapa, himself a physician.
Varipapa says his daughter's pain could have been diagnosed far more easily and cheaply with a $1,400 ultrasound.
“A history, a pelvic examination and probably an ultrasound,” he said. And he would have started with the ultrasound.
But the hospital defends the CT scan, saying an ultrasound might have missed something more serious.