Too Many Patients Know Too Little About Their MRI, CT Scans: Study

From Drugs.com - February 13, 2018

Too Many Patients Know Too Little About Their MRI, CT Scans: Study

TUESDAY, Feb. 13, 2018 -- Before they go in for an X-ray, CT scan or MRI, patients may have questions about their screening. But new research finds at least one in every five people saying they received no information about their procedures beforehand.

"This is an important finding in today's health care system, where we want more patient engagement and involvement," said lead author Dr. Jay Pahade, an associate professor of radiology at Yale School of Medicine.

In the study, typical patient questions around imaging scans included: How do I prepare for the scan?; Does it use radiation, and how much?; and Is this scan really needed?

For the study, researchers surveyed more than 1,400 patients and caregivers at three pediatric and three adult hospitals across the United States. The participants were asked if they had received imaging exam information before the procedure, and what type of information would be most helpful.

Less than 80 percent of patients said they received information about their imaging exam beforehand, according to the study.

"This means one in five people are showing up for the exam without any information about the test they are getting," Pahade said.

He noted that patients who feel they have little idea about what their scan involves also experience higher levels of anxiety around the screening.


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