Radiology reporting of incidental osteoporotic vertebral fragility fractures present on CT studies: results of UK national re-audit

D. C. Howlett, K. J. Drinkwater, N. Mahmood, L. Salman, J. Griffin, M. K. Javaid, G. Retnasingam, A. Marzoug, R. Greenhalgh,

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Aim: To describe a UK-wide re-audit of the 2019 Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) audit evaluating patient-related data and organisational infrastructure in the radiological reporting of vertebral fragility fractures (VFFs) on computed tomography (CT) studies and to assess the impact of a series of RCR interventions, initiated to raise VFF awareness, on reporting practice and outcomes.

Materials and Methods: Patient specific and organisational questionnaires largely replicated those utilised in 2019. The patient questionnaire involved retrospective analysis of between 50 and 100 consecutive, non-traumatic CT studies which included the thoracolumbar spine. All RCR radiology audit leads were invited to participate. Data collection commenced from 1 April 2022. RESULTS: Data were supplied by 129/194 (67%) departments. One thousand five hundred and eighty-six of 7,316 patients (21.7%) had a VFF on auditor review. Overall improvements were demonstrated in key initial/provisional reporting results; comment on spine/bone (93.2%, 14.4% improvement, p<0.0002); fracture severity assessment (34.7%, 8.5% improvement, p=0.0007); use of recommended terminology (67.8%, 7.5% improvement, p=0.0034); recommendations for further management (11.7%, 9.1% improvement, p<0.0002).

Conclusions: The 2022 national re-audit confirms improvements in diagnostic performance and practice in VFF reporting. Continuing work is required to build on this improvement and to further embed best practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e1041-e1047
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Radiology
Volume78
Issue number12
Early online date29 Sept 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

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