A concise, evidence-based medical tool that saves you money


Should I get a screening chest x-ray for my upcoming elective surgery (for example: gallbadder removal, knee surgery, sinus surgery) if I don’t have pre-existing lung problems?


MedHead Confidence Score: 8
Amount Saved: $420 cost of chest x-ray post


MedHead Message:

This is one of the most commonly ordered, yet wasteful tests done prior to surgery, yet only around 2% of these chest x-rays result in changing the management of surgery, and most of those abnormal chest x-rays already have known underlying lung problems. If you don’t have known heart or lung problems, and are not having surgery on your lungs or heart, then you don’t need a pre-operative chest x-ray, according to the American College of Radiology. Go ahead and show this to your surgeon! $420 is about 14 tanks of gas for your car…That’s a lot of extra trips for your kids soccer practice…or a really LONG roadtrip!


1. http://www.choosingwisely.org/clinician-lists/american-college-radiology-admission-preop-chest-x-rays/


3. https://www.newchoicehealth.com/procedures/chest-x-ray


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