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Anna Parks, MD, and Margaret C. Fang, MD, MPH ; March 2018
One day after reading only the first line of a final ultrasound result (which stated that the patient had a thrombosis), an intern reported to the ICU team that the patient had a DVT. Because she had postoperative bleeding, the team elected to place an inferior vena cava (IVC) filter rather than administer anticoagulants to prevent a pulmonary embolism (PE). The next week, a new ICU team discussed the care plan and questioned the IVC filter. The senior resident reviewed the radiology records and found the ultrasound report actually stated the thrombosis was in a superficial vein with low risk for PE, which meant that the correct step in management of this patient's thrombosis should have been surveillance.
Journal Article > Study
Timely follow-up of abnormal outpatient test results: perceived barriers and impact on patient safety.
Moore C, Saigh O, Trikha A, Lin JJ. J Patient Saf. 2008;4:241-244.
Physicians reported dissatisfaction with their ability to follow up on test results in a timely fashion, with resident physicians frequently reporting an inability to check test results in less than 1 week. The need for standardized methods for following up test results in ambulatory care was noted in a prior study.