[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 31-Aug-2009
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Contact: Charlotte Webber
charlotte.webber@biomedcentral.com
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BioMed Central

Excessive radiological imaging explained

The reasons for unnecessary over-use of radiological imaging tests have been investigated. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Health Services Research polled 374 radiologists about their perspective on the causes of increasing and unnecessary use of radiological investigations.

Kristin Lysdahl and Bjørn Hofmann from the University of Oslo, Norway, sent a questionnaire to radiologist members of the Norwegian Medical Association asking them about potential causes of increased investigation volume and unnecessary investigations. Lysdahl said, "Over-utilization implies wasteful investigations, such as those whose results are unlikely to affect patient management. Because some investigations carry risks from radiation exposure and many can be expensive to the health service, it is important to limit their excessive use."

The five highest scored causes of increased use were: increased possibilities due to new radiological technology; patients' increased demands for certain knowledge about their own health; referring physicians' lower tolerance for uncertainty; expanded clinical indications for radiology; and increased availability of radiological equipment and personnel. The authors write, "Patients have become better informed about their rights, and they appear increasingly demanding of investigative procedures."

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1. What causes increasing and unnecessary use of radiological investigations? a survey of radiologists' perceptions.
Kristin B Lysdahl and Bjorn M Hofmann
BMC Health Services Research

During embargo, article available here: http://www.biomedcentral.com/imedia/6980088522592106_article.pdf?random=534984

After the embargo, article available at the journal website: http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmchealthservres/

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Article citation and URL available on request at press@biomedcentral.com on the day of publication

2. BMC Health Services Research is an open access journal publishing original peer-reviewed research articles in all aspects of health services research, including delivery of care, management of health services, assessment of healthcare needs, measurement of outcomes, allocation of healthcare resources, evaluation of different health markets and health services organizations, international comparative analysis of health systems, health economics and the impact of health policies and regulations. BMC Health Services Research (ISSN 1472-6963) is indexed/tracked/covered by PubMed, MEDLINE, CAS, Scopus, EMBASE, Cinahl, Current Contents, Thomson Reuters (ISI) and Google Scholar.

3. BioMed Central (http://www.biomedcentral.com/) is an STM (Science, Technology and Medicine) publisher which has pioneered the open access publishing model. All peer-reviewed research articles published by BioMed Central are made immediately and freely accessible online, and are licensed to allow redistribution and reuse. BioMed Central is part of Springer Science+Business Media, a leading global publisher in the STM sector.



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