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Br J Radiol. 2009 Jun;82(978):482-5. doi: 10.1259/bjr/31522537. Epub 2008 Dec 19.

Imaging of patients with clinically suspected appendicitis in the Netherlands: conclusions of a survey.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Medisch Centrum Haaglanden, Lijnbaan 32, 2501 CK Den Haag, The Netherlands. coblod@tiscali.nl

Abstract

The aim of this study was to summarize the extent of variation in imaging strategies in patients clinically suspected of having appendicitis. By means of a written survey, the policies for the imaging management of patients clinically suspected of having appendicitis in the Netherlands were inventoried. A questionnaire was sent to the departments of surgery and radiology of all 105 Dutch hospitals, including the 8 academic medical centres, in March 2006. Questionnaires were returned from 98 hospitals. It was found that, in the work-up of patients suspected of having appendicitis, ultrasound or CT was performed in a minority of hospitals for 50% or more of these patients. In the majority of hospitals, it was carried out for less than 50% of these patients. There is a widespread variability in pre-operative imaging regardless of hospital type. This survey shows that, despite the ubiquitous presence of ultrasound and CT in Dutch hospitals, the pre-operative imaging work-up in patients clinically suspected of having acute appendicitis does not reflect this, being performed in only a minority of patients suspected of having acute appendicitis. Radiologists and surgeons alike should be aware of the positive impact of adjunctive imaging in this group of patients - most importantly lowering the negative appendicectomy rate and also lowering total hospital costs.

PMID:
19098079
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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