Often times there are variations in the world of emergency diagnostic imaging. The variations were at times attributed to factors related to the physician. The factors that were often brought up were gender, experience, and training. It’s fair to assume that training may have something to do with it, considering that in an ER you often see a lot of rookie physicians cutting their teeth. It’s been written, recently, that patient factors play a real part in emergency imaging.
What’s interesting about this is that the study that was conducted shows that there is little difference from ER physician to ER physician in terms of how diagnostic imaging is handled. In terms of imaging in the ER there is concern, at least by some as stated by Dr. Chris Sistrom PhD. Sistrom stated that “There’s a lot of concern among radiologists and insurers that imaging may not be providing much value in the emergency department and, in fact, is not only delivering a lot of radiation to patients, but is also boosting healthcare costs.” The key here is obviously lessening that patient’s risks and costs.
It was established that physicians in the emergency room do not really have the control over tests being performed. If a patient has been a prior visitor to the ER and has a condition that has some degree of similarity to the one before, chances are that there will be a need for some sort of procedure. Many times, frequent visits to the ER mean that there is an undiscovered complex condition in wait. A patient may well have something worst than a simple stomach virus or cough.
Physicians in the emergency room have to use whatever they can in order to better diagnose a patient. Diagnostic imaging is a part of that equation and it’s often used only when necessary. The result is that a reduction of ER diagnostic imaging practices is not going to really be effective when based on physicians. Ultimate results in ER diagnostic imaging use will be better monitored based on patient factors and clinical usefulness. The ultimate purpose is to give the patient an MRI, CT Scan, or X-Ray, when necessary and salient to the health issues of the individual.
If you have any questions about diagnostic imaging procedures or equipment please feel free to contact us at any time. We look forward to taking your call and answering any questions you may have.
Robert Nicholas Serros Jr.
President & CEO
407-438-7847 ext 1003