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Ethical Communication in Radiology

Author(s): Laleh Mirzaei | Mortaza Ashrafi

Journal: Iranian Journal of Radiology
ISSN 1735-1065

Volume: 8;
Issue: S1;
Start page: 77;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Keyword

This paper is aimed at reviewing medical literature to"nfind an appropriate, ethical and honest communication"nmethod, which is a critical component of diagnostic"nimaging. Quality patient care can only be achieved"nwhen we interpret images and diagnose disease"nand transmit reports in an appropriate fashion with"ntimely sending of the report to those responsible for treatment decisions. Body and components of the"nreport are very similar; demographics of the institute"nand the patient, clinical status and history, imaging"nmodality and techniques, reference to the referring"nphysician as a colleague without flattery but with"nsome differences depending on the policy of institutes."nEthical communication has several aspects to respect"nautonomy of the patient and avoiding to harm him,"nthe referring care giver and the professional dignity"nof colleagues and imaging science, by embrace in"ndirect communication by referring to the caregiver"nfor seeking comprehensive details, using readable and"ndefinite phrases instead of nonspecific, imprecise and"nuncertain or coded sentences in the report and on"nthe other hand not to mention unnecessary details"nsuch as "to lose forest for the trees", avoiding needless"ncomments for further imaging studies and follow-ups"nwithout medical indications such as self referral or"nfor preventing law-suits and medico-legal complaints"nin the future, avoiding advertising and unjustified"ncompetition via communication (written or paperless)"nto prevent interruption of patient care by vilifying"nthe referring physician or advising the patient to use"nsome medications, not considering the pressure of"nthe referring physician to word the report to suit him"nand not to pressure the physician to do something"nunwanted, to make an ethical balance between patient's"nmoral and legal rights to know and on the other hand,"nthe physician's rights to perform ethical practice when"ndisclosing the imaging results to the patient directly.

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