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Do more imaging tests improve cancer outcomes?

Wall Street Journal Health Blog, April 28, 2010

The cost of scans such as CT, MRI, and PET for cancer patients is rising faster than the total cost of those people's medical care, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds. The JAMA study, by Duke University researchers, tracked the increase in costs between 1999 and 2006 among Medicare beneficiaries with six types of cancer. "Significant" annual increases in imaging use occurred among all the cancers, with lung cancer and lymphoma patients incurring more than $3,000 in imaging costs within two years of diagnosis.