Most doctors practice defensive medicine

A new study confirms that many doctors practice defensive medicine because they are concerned that they may be sued. The study, which appears in today's Journal of the American Medical Association, found that an overwhelming majority routinely take steps to avoid being sued. Researchers asked 825 doctors in Pennsylvania detailed questions about the way they handle potentially dangerous or unusual cases.

Over 90 percent said they "routinely order diagnostic tests, procedures or specialist referrals" to limit their own liability. About 40 percent said they choose not to see risky patients or avoided procedures with a high risk of complications.

- see this story from the AP