Patient-Centered and Specialty-Specific Case Work-Up: An Effective Method for Teaching Appropriateness of Imaging to Medical Students.

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Academic radiology

MeSH Headings

Career Choice, Humans, Students, Medical, Medicine, Health Services, Research Design, Patient-Centered Care


RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES: Our institution has developed a mini-course program within the diagnostic radiology elective curriculum that promotes active learning, using patient cases specifically tailored to students' future specialties. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of this mini-course on medical student knowledge of imaging appropriateness and attitude toward radiologist consultation.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: During each month-long radiology elective course, students were divided into teams of up to four students based on their specialty interest and assigned recent patient cases with imaging findings relevant to their specialties. The students researched their customized patient cases, integrated pertinent clinical and imaging findings, and presented their findings in a final preceptor-led session. A five-point Likert-type item preprogram and postprogram survey assessing knowledge of imaging appropriateness and attitude toward radiologist consultation was sent to the enrolled medical students.

RESULTS: Out of 36 medical students, 33 (92%) completed the preprogram survey and 31 (86%) completed the postprogram survey. Students reported improved confidence in knowledge of imaging appropriateness, such as indications for intravenous contrast (p < 0.0005) and oral contrast (p < 0.0005). Furthermore, students reported an improved understanding of how to utilize radiologists (p < 0.005) and how to provide pertinent clinical historical information when requesting a radiology exam (p < 0.0005). Students reported that researching the patient's historical and clinical information in conjunction with the radiology images made them more invested in the case.

CONCLUSION: Assigning customized patient cases to medical students on diagnostic radiology elective, tailored to their future specialties, is an effective and active way to teach imaging appropriateness and to improve attitudes toward radiologist consultation.



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