Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Patient Photos Spur Radiologist Empathy And Eye For Detail

Date:
December 14, 2008
Source:
Radiological Society of North America
Summary:
Including a patient's photo with imaging exam results may enable a more meticulous reading from the radiologist interpreting the images, as well as a more personal and empathetic approach, according to a new study.

Depiction of a patient's photograph attached to her exam.
Credit: Image courtesy of Radiological Society of North America

Including a patient's photo with imaging exam results may enable a more meticulous reading from the radiologist interpreting the images, as well as a more personal and empathetic approach, according to a study presented December 3 at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).

Related Articles


"Our study emphasizes approaching the patient as a human being and not as an anonymous case study," said lead author Yehonatan N. Turner, M.D., radiology resident at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, Israel.

Many radiologists have limited contact with patients. A referring physician will order imaging exams, such as MRI or computed tomography (CT), and the radiologist interprets the results, never having met the patient.

Technological advances have further distanced the radiologist from interaction with the patient. With the advent of teleradiology, radiologists are now able to view images from remote locations via the Internet or satellite.

"We feel it is important to counteract the anonymity that is common in radiologic exams, especially with the growth of teleradiology," Dr. Turner said.

The researchers set out to determine if the addition of a patient's photograph to the file would affect how radiologists interpreted the results.

For the study, 318 patients referred for CT agreed to be photographed prior to the exam. The images of the patients were added to their files in the hospital's picture archiving and communication system (PACS), a network for storage and retrieval of medical images. The photograph appeared automatically when a patient's file was opened.

After interpreting the results of the exams, 15 radiologists were given questionnaires to gather data about their experience. All 15 radiologists admitted feeling more empathy towards the patients after viewing their photos. In addition, the photographs revealed medical information such as suffering or physical signs of disease.

More importantly, the results showed that radiologists provided a more meticulous reading of medical image results when a photo of the patient accompanied the file.

Incidental findings are unexpected abnormalities found on an image that may have health implications beyond the scope of the original exam. In order to assess the effect of the photographs on interpretation, 81 examinations with incidental findings were shown in a blinded fashion to the same radiologists three months later but without the photos. Approximately 80 percent of the radiologic incidental findings reported originally were not reported when the photograph was omitted from the file.

The radiologists involved in the study commented that while the addition of the photo did not lengthen the time spent reading, it was a factor in how meticulously they interpreted the images. All 15 radiologists agreed that the inclusion of a photograph in a patient's file should be adopted into routine practice. The photos can also be included in long-distance teleradiology practices.

"The photos were very helpful both in terms of improving diagnosis and the physicians' own feelings as caregivers," Dr. Turner said. "Down the road, we would like to see photos added to all radiology case files."

Co-authors are Irith Hadas-Halpern, M.D., and David Raveh, M.D.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Radiological Society of North America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Radiological Society of North America. "Patient Photos Spur Radiologist Empathy And Eye For Detail." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202080809.htm>.
Radiological Society of North America. (2008, December 14). Patient Photos Spur Radiologist Empathy And Eye For Detail. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202080809.htm
Radiological Society of North America. "Patient Photos Spur Radiologist Empathy And Eye For Detail." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202080809.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

EU, Russia, Ukraine Seal Breakthrough Gas Accord

EU, Russia, Ukraine Seal Breakthrough Gas Accord

AFP (Oct. 31, 2014) Russia agrees to resume gas deliveries to war-torn Ukraine through the winter in an EU-brokered, multi-billion dollar deal signed by the three parties in Brussels. Duration: 01:10 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Relief After “gas War” Is Averted

Relief After “gas War” Is Averted

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 31, 2014) A gas war between Russia and Ukraine has been averted. But as Hayley Platt reports a deal was only reached after Kiev's western creditors agreed to partly funding the deal. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) British luxury car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover opened a $800 million engine manufacturing centre in western England, creating 1,400 jobs. Duration: 00:45 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

Buzz60 (Oct. 30, 2014) A start-up company called Krossblade says its SkyCruiser concept flying car solves the problem with most flying car concepts. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins