health

Patients often puzzled by medical test reports

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© Thomson Reuters 2020.

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As a person who had an organ removed following a misdiagnosis, and where the initial scan report was accurate and would have led to the correct diagnosis, but was misread by the physician - I fully support giving patients those reports. Even if initially misunderstood by the patient, they offer a basis for clarifying dialog with the physician.

in addition, reports need to follow a template for each scan/procedure such that the treating physician and the patient are less apt to miss something.

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well, this is no rocket-science, on one side you have data that requires years of study to be interpreted correctly and in the other side you have regular people that spend those years studying or preparing for other things in life. For the lay people to obtain any usefulness from the results you need someone that can read it and then translate it to the specific situation of the patient, if you want to skip this very necessary middle-man (the treating doctor) its obvious you will end up with trouble.

Maybe the problem is not that results communicated efficiently in a professional environment confuse non-professionals, it may very well be people thinking they can understand everything without effort.

If hospitals wants the results to be meaningful and easy to understand to patients directly there is no other real option but to hire a professional to study each case and provide the necessary guidance to the results.

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