The study of Malvang et al describes interaction between radiological department at Silkeborg Regional Hospital in Denmark and the local general practitioners (GPs) regarding referral for chest imaging for patients with pulmonary symptoms. During a period of six months in 2019, the GPs could choose between three options: plain X-ray, low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) and a contrast-enhanced CT (CECT) of the chest and upper abdomen, the latter option as part of the lung cancer referral pathway.
Of a total of 1,112 referrals, the radiological department suggested conversion to CECT in 97 cases (9%) based on the clinical information. In 71% (69/97) of these cases, the GP accepted the conversion to CECT; 55 of 73 LDCTs and 14 of 24 X-rays.
The authors report that the feedback from the radiological department was well received by GPs and may be a step towards structured decision support to facilitate the optimal choice of chest imaging.