As Oregon residents may know, health care professionals use a myriad of tools to arrive at a proper diagnosis. Today, the contents of that tool chest have expanded to include neuroimaging and other sophisticated techniques. Defining disease such a traumatic brain injury and breast cancer are but two of the areas where diagnosis is aided by new tests.
There is a fine line between diagnosis and overdiagnosis, according to a professor at the University of Pennsylvania. In some cases, the nidus of suspected disease detected by sophisticated instruments might not herald harm to the patient. In addition, in situations where the true diagnosis might be better confirmed by biopsy, deciding on a diagnosis is tenuous if a biopsy cannot be performed.