Intended for healthcare professionals


Too much medicine; too little care

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 02 July 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f4247

Re: Too much medicine; too little care

In their presentation of the BMJ’s Too Much Medicine campaign, Paul Glasziou and colleagues welcome suggestions for future articles. I suggest saving from oblivion studies of the use of ultrasound scans in pregnancy. Studies contrasting routine and selective attitudes came to the concordant conclusion that a politics of ultrasound scans “on demand” is a way to significantly reduce the average number of scans per pregnancy without altering the perinatal morbidity and mortality rates.1,2 We must keep in mind that routine ultrasound scanning in pregnancy is the most expensive component of modern prenatal care.

1. Ewigman BG, Crane JP, Frigoletto FD, et al. Effect of prenatal ultrasound screening on perinatal outcome. N Engl J Med 1993; 329(12): 821-7

2. Bucher HC, Schmidt J G. Does routine ultrasound scanning improve outcome in pregnancy? Meta-analysis of various outcome measures. BMJ 1993; 307(6895): 13-7.

Competing interests: No competing interests

11 July 2013
Michel R ODENT
Primal Health Research Centre
72 Savernake Road. London NW3 2JR