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Pediatr Emerg Care. 2010 Feb;26(2):85-92. doi: 10.1097/PEC.0b013e3181cdf349.

Toward improving the diagnosis and the treatment of adolescent pelvic inflammatory disease in emergency departments: results of a brief, educational intervention.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA.



To assess the utility of an abbreviated teaching tool (ATT) in improving emergency medicine pediatricians' knowledge of the diagnosis and the treatment of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).


An 18-question internet-based survey, which included questions about the diagnosis and the treatment of PID, was administered to members of the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Emergency Medicine. Participants were randomized to receive either a weblink to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) sexually transmitted disease treatment guidelines (weblink group) or a 1-page ATT that summarized the CDC guidelines (ATT group) to assist with completion of the survey. We compared the accuracy of responses between the 2 groups.


Two hundred thirty-seven subjects responded to the survey (109 from the weblink group and 128 from ATT group). There were no significant differences between the groups with respect to sex, geographic location, practice setting, years of experience, or reported frequency of recent PID diagnoses. Ninety-seven percent of the ATT group correctly identified the appropriate antibiotic regimen in compliance with the CDC guidelines compared with 61% of the weblink group (OR, 19.4; 95% confidence interval, 6.6-76.9); the ATT group was also more likely to correctly identify appropriate treatment options overall (OR, 9.6; 95% confidence interval, 4.9-19.3).


Although the overall PID knowledge in our sample was low, the physicians with access to a 1-page teaching tool summarizing the CDC treatment recommendations for PID performed significantly better when asked questions involving PID treatment as compared with providers with access to the CDC Web site. Further studies should investigate whether access to a similar tool can improve patient care.

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