Five tests and procedures that obstetricians/gynaecologists and their
patients should question the need for are outlined in a list released by the
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) as part of the
Choosing Wisely campaign.
The American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation-led campaign involves
about 35 medical specialty groups and is intended to encourage patients and
doctors to discuss appropriate care while avoiding unnecessary tests and
treatments. ACOG is one of 17 medical societies that recently released advice
"We carefully selected the five procedures and tests in ob-gyn based on their
potential to improve quality health care and avoid potential harm. As ob-gyns,
our goal is to provide women the very best evidence-based medical care," Dr Hal
Lawrence III, ACOG executive vice president, said in a college news release.
Here are the ACOG recommendations:
- Elective, non-medically indicated inductions of labour or caesarean
deliveries should not be scheduled before 39 weeks' gestation. Delivery prior to
39 weeks has been shown to be associated with an increased risk of learning
disabilities and a potential increase in illness and death.
- Elective, non-medically indicated inductions of labour between 39 weeks' and
41 weeks' gestation should not be scheduled unless the cervix is deemed
- Routine annual Pap tests are not needed in women aged 30 to 65. In
average-risk women, an annual screening offers no advantages over screening
every three years.
- Treatment is not needed in average-risk women who have "mild dysplasia,"
which is associated with the human papillomavirus (HPV), for a period of less
than two years.
- For average-risk women with no symptoms, there is no need to screen for
ovarian cancer. In these women, the potential harms of screening outweigh the
Here's where you can learn more about the Choosing Wisely