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Clin Radiol. 2004 Feb;59(2):159-62; discussion 157-8.

Trainee reporting of computed tomography examinations: do they make mistakes and does it matter?

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London, UK.



To determine the accuracy of trainees reporting computed tomography (CT) examinations.


Over a 6-month period a single consultant reviewed all the CT examinations reported by registrars in one radiology department. After recording a provisional registrar report each examination was jointly reviewed by the consultant and registrar. The consultant's opinion was regarded as the gold standard. Data collected included: the error rate, whether an error was significant, leading to a change in patient management, and whether the mistake was a false-negative or positive.


Three hundred and thirty-one patients were included in the study. There was an overall error rate of 21.5%. A significant error leading to a change in management was made in 10% of reports, and a significant error that did not lead to a change in management was made in 9.3%; 2.1% of reports had insignificant errors; and 69% of errors were false-negatives.


Registrars make a significant number of errors affecting patient management when reporting CT and ideally all examinations should be reviewed by a consultant.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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