Study curates list of ‘useless treatments’ Dutch doctors should stop using

Knee pain, ear infections, and heavy painkillers. All these ailments can be found in a Top 30 list of things Dutch doctors shouldn’t do when treating their patients. Say again?

Researchers from the Radboud University Medical Centre together with the Dutch College of General Practitioners (NHG) have reviewed a total of 92 General Practitioner guidelines.

The results?

The researchers clocked a whooping 385 recommendations of what better NOT to do when treating a patient, the Volkskrant reports.

This list of ‘useless’ treatments is rooted in the belief that a lot of interventions do more harm than good.

How did they make this list?

Dutch doctors are known for their laissez-faire ‘paracetamol-only‘ approach — and this recent study really lives up to the stereotype.

About a hundred Dutch GPs have been asked to rank the list of ‘not-to-do’ recommendations according to how often they encounter them in their practice.

As a result, a list of ‘Top 30 things’ to avoid as a Dutch GP will be published later this week. Ever heard a more Dutch thing?

Knee pain, ear infections, and painkillers

Curious about some of the recommendations on the list? We’ve got you.

Knee pain

Turns out, four out of the 30 recommendations are about knee pain — and all the things that just don’t quite seem to help.

Amongst those useless treatments: X-rays, MRI scans, tapes, and knee supports. But wait, there’s more! What also doesn’t seem to work are hyaluronic injections or transferrals to a sports doctor.

What usually works? Well, apparently, a lot of complaints pass over time. 🤷‍♀️

Ear and lung infections

Another not-to-do recommendation concerns the prescription of antibiotics, particularly in relation to ear and light lung infections.

Not only do the majority of infections heal by themselves, but this recommendation is also wary of potential antibiotic resistance. Now, that makes sense!

Painkiller prescriptions

This one is interesting: Dutch GPs are asked to stop automatic repeat prescriptions for heavy painkillers such as opioids.

One glance across the great pond tells us that opioid addiction is already a major problem in the US. Again, not doing anything is considered much more beneficial for the patient in the long run.

What do you think of this Dutch approach to treatment? Tell us in the comments!

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Cara Räker 🇩🇪
Cara Räker 🇩🇪
Cara moved to the Netherlands at fifteen and she is here to stay! After all, there is so much to love about it, except maybe the bread (as every German will tell you). Next to finishing up her bachelor's degree in European politics (dry), Cara loves to do yoga, swim, and cook delicious veggie food.

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