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Abe T, Tokuda Y, Shiraishi A, et al. Crit Care. 2019;23:202.
This retrospective study sought to determine whether timely diagnosis of the site of infection affected in-hospital mortality for sepsis. Investigators found that patients whose infection site was misdiagnosed on admission had more than twofold greater odds of dying in the hospital compared to those with the correct infection site diagnosed on admission. These results reinforce the importance of correct and timely diagnosis for sepsis outcomes.
Liu D, Gan R, Zhang W, et al. J Clin Pathol. 2018;71:67-71.
Autopsies are an underutilized tool for identifying diagnostic errors. Researchers evaluated 117 autopsies for patients in Shanghai whose cause of death was disputed or required third-party investigation. Diagnostic errors that would have altered treatment or survival were found in nearly 61%. This number is higher than estimates from a previous systematic review, likely because all patients in this sample had a disputed cause of death.
Lin Y-K, Lin C-J, Chan H-M, et al. Injury. 2014;45:83-7.
Full-time trauma surgeons had a lower incidence of diagnostic errors (defined as the incidence of missed injuries in severely injured patients) compared with surgeons who primarily practiced in other specialties, according to this retrospective analysis of patients admitted to a Taiwanese surgical intensive care unit.
Paley L, Zornitzki T, Cohen J, et al. Arch Intern Med. 2011;171:1394-6.
This research letter examines the value of the physical examination in forming a correct diagnosis on admission. The authors found that four out of five internal medicine patients in the emergency department could be correctly diagnosed from information gleaned by the history, physical examination, and basic laboratory tests.
Lu T-C, Tsai C-L, Lee C-C, et al. Emerg Med J. 2006;23:452-5.
The authors retrospectively reviewed charts of early mortality in their emergency department from a 3-year period and categorized events that were preventable. They found that inappropriate medical management, delay in diagnosis, and misdiagnosis contributed to the deaths.