Overdiagnosis: it’s official

Recently the US National Library of Medicine (NLM) unveiled new terms to be included in the medical subject headings (MeSH) vocabulary used to index, catalogue, and search journal articles, books, and other biomedical and health related information.

One of the new terms is Overdiagnosis

“The labeling of a person with a disease or abnormal condition that would not have caused the person harm if left undiscovered, creating new diagnoses by medicalizing ordinary life experiences, or expanding existing diagnoses by lowering thresholds or widening criteria without evidence of improved outcomes. Individuals derive no clinical benefit from overdiagnosis, although they may experience physical, psychological, or financial harm.”
Link to full article https://www.bmj.com/content/375/bmj.n2854

BMJ podcast – Steven Woloshin & Helen Macdonald talk about the importance of the MeSH term Overdiagnosis (19 min 40 sec)