I recently watched a documentary on the diagnosis and treatment of coronary artery disease and it’s consequence (myocardial infarction) in which surgical intervention before an event - via a calcium scan +/- stent placement - was pitted against intervention at the time of the event (stenting or CABG.)
The major claim of the documentary is that the use of calcium scans has been suppressed by a conspiracy of greed among multimillionaire-interventional cardiologists and hospitals in favor of the big money over the common-sense approach of detection and treatment. The maker keeps showing the increasing annual number of sudden deaths in the US, clearly implying that if everyone (including perfectly healthy 35 year olds with no risk factors) just got a hundred-dollar scan, millions of lives would be saved.
From the website:
For thirty years a hidden battle has been fought inside America’s medical establishment that has condemned them to death – a battle that is as much about money, as it is about medicine – a battle that this film reveals for the first time.
In a time when more and more doctors are coming to terms with the problems of screening exams - even to the point of calling for an end to routine screening for prostate cancer - is there any truth to the filmmaker’s claim?