Unsuspected pulmonary embolus (PE) is a diagnosis made on many routine CT thorax scans, particularly staging and follow-up scans for oncology patients.
CT radiographers should be able to identify these at the time of scanning to improve speed of diagnosis and subsequent treatment for these patients.
Andrew Stephens, CT specialty manager at Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, has worked with Professor Ged Avery, consultant radiologist and Honorary Professor at Hull York Medical School, and the team at eLfH to develop a training module to support radiographers in identifying unsuspected PE.
The module takes about 30 minutes to complete and outlines the imaging features of PE, anatomy and common pitfalls, with quizzes to help embed knowledge.
A second module is currently being developed which is a series of validated CT cases to be reviewed to embed the learning points from the first module. This will be available soon and will enable radiographers to practice their knowledge and image review skills on a validated set of CT scans with various imaging appearances and potential false positives.
Andrew, who is Joint Chair of the SoR CT Advisory Group, said: “Furthering CT education among radiographers is one of the many objectives of the group, which will be continuing to work on developing further CT education materials in the future”.
Lynda Johnson, SoR Professional Officer for the CTAG, said: “The SoR is delighted to see the first of the objectives developed by the CTAG come to fruition. Thanks to Andrew and his team, and to Dorothy Keane, SoR Professional Officer- eLfH, for delivering this valuable resource.
“The module can be used as an informal educational resource or as part of a formal process to implement early detection of unsuspected pulmonary embolus. The impact of faster treatment pathways for patients is positive news in the current climate of increasing waiting times for diagnostic imaging. We hope this will encourage other services to support experienced radiographers working in CT to develop their skills in this way.”
Click here to access the module: Imaging Features of Pulmonary Embolism