Some say that because medical technology has come a long way and has improved it benefits overall health. Many people question whether improved medical technology has really helped us. Studies show that it hasn’t. The cost of medical care in general is on the rise due to the high cost of trying to introduce new technology. When we see advancements in this kind of technology most people automatically think it’s a good thing, but is it really? To answer that question it is not. U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment stated “technologies that are introduced are sometimes unsafe or ineffective or have unanticipated costs associated with their use; limited resources are probably not ...view middle of the document...
” (Alfonsi and Hutchison) The demand for this new technology is due to people thinking that it is high-tech and it must be a good thing. New technology can be good if it is used properly and selectively.
Medical Technology would be a good improvement if it wasn’t overused. Dr. Herb Kressel states “There’s no doubt in my mind that we’re doing a better job.. no doubt that in part [the decrease in mortality] is due to technology. The problem is how we use the resources effectively to prolong life and improve quality of life.” There are many times when doctors will do unnecessary testing so that they can make money. If technology is used selectively and only where it is needed in turn it would have a better overall outcome. Another study done by Kressel shows that doctors feel that they will be held responsible for a miss diagnosis if they don’t perform every test.
More people go under the knife, research shows that rates of knee surgeries have increased by 70 percent. Along with that, kidney and liver transplants have also increased. With new drugs being discovered, doctors prescribe more medications and therefore that has increased in past years. In 1994 there was only 38 percent of people on some form of medication compared to 47 percent in 2008.
The safety of a patient is jeopardized when doctors decide to do a bunch of testing. Over exposure to radiation will cause cancer. CT scans are a useful tool as far as being able to look at it and find out what might be going on with a patient. However, the amount of radiation a person is exposed to from a single CT scan is close to the dose that survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bombing were exposed to. Natural exposure from TV’s, computers and other electronics is normal.
Exposure to radiation from food, water, rocks, and radon can be a risk to everyone at some point. The radiation that is used in medical technology is considered to be non-natural and is much more harmful. Seventy percent of medical radiation comes from CT scans. There are over sixty million scans performed each year. Medical staff would argue that they are good ways to diagnose problems that may be wrong with a patient, however it’s not worth the risk of being exposed to a high dose of radiation. There is a study that was done that stated “Many people receive multiple scans; one six-year study of 4,562 patients found that 176 (4%) people had been exposed to cumulative radiation doses of 20-154 mSv.” That gives an idea of how much over exposure is done and proves that it is not worth the risk.
“A 2005 National Academy of Science report estimates that one individual in 1,000 develops cancer from exposure to a 10 mSv dose of radiation.” Comparing to the...