Table 2

Coding framework for analysis of responses to “What do you think overdiagnosis means?”

ThemeExplanation of theme
 Exaggerating something that is thereDiagnosing a condition to be more serious/severe than what it actually is; overmedicalising; overcomplicating
 Diagnosing something that is not thereDiagnosing a condition that the person does not actually have/does not exist
 Too much diagnosis/too many diagnosesDoctors making a diagnosis more frequently than what is needed/people being diagnosed with too many conditions
 OverprescribingPrescribing too many medications—more than is needed
 OvertreatmentUnnecessary medical interventions and services provided, including referrals; overservicing
 OvertestingA doctor performing or a person having too many unnecessary tests to get a diagnosis
 Doctors looking too much into thingsDoctors looking too hard, too much or too often, for a problem to diagnose
 Patients/people driving itPatients/people who search for too much unnecessary medical information or are unusually anxious or worried about their health
 Wrong diagnosisWrongly diagnosed with a condition (with no suggestion of exaggerating something)
 Doctors financial gain as a driverdoctors whose ultimate goal is to make money or cover themselves for financial or litigation reasons