Appropriateness education may not reduce unnecessary CTPA imaging

Providing appropriateness training to emergency department doctors ordering CT pulmonary angiography (CTPA) won't necessarily decrease inappropriate use of that test, according to a new study in Academic Radiology.

Researchers found that emergency department physicians actually order more inappropriate exams after undergoing an education session on the appropriate use of imaging. The researchers found that physicians may be reluctant to skip a CT pulmonary angiography test because of the danger of undiagnosed pulmonary embolism, and that a negative exam--because of its negative predictive value--gives physicians enough confidence to release patients from the emergency department sooner. Abstract

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