Document Detail

Pulmonary embolism and spiral computerized tomographic scans.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19478667     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The potential impact of helical computerized tomography (CT) on earlier diagnosis and earlier treatment of pulmonary embolism and improved health outcomes is significant. The purpose of this review is to summarize the state-of-the-art of radiographic pulmonary embolism detection and consider future directions to reduce this significant public health problem. RECENT FINDINGS: Technologic advances in CT have greatly improved the sensitivity and specificity of pulmonary embolism detection. Although there are controversies regarding the significance of peripheral subsegmental emboli, higher radiation risk, and cost, there is increasing evidence that this improved technology provides for earlier pulmonary embolism detection, at an earlier stage of disease, allowing for earlier treatment, at lower severity of illness, with lower mortality. Whether small peripheral pulmonary embolism requires treatment or negative CT requires more testing remain unsettled issues. SUMMARY: CT of the lung is an evolving technology that is improving medical decision making and health outcomes for individuals who sustain pulmonary embolism, one of the leading causes of in-hospital death. Future approaches include reducing cost and radiation risk, and promoting anticoagulation prophylaxis and provider and consumer awareness. The time is ripe to ensure evolving technology equates with long-term healthier outcomes.
Margaret V Ragni
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Current opinion in pulmonary medicine     Volume:  15     ISSN:  1531-6971     ISO Abbreviation:  Curr Opin Pulm Med     Publication Date:  2009 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-07-28     Completed Date:  2009-11-17     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9503765     Medline TA:  Curr Opin Pulm Med     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  430-8     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213-4306, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Angiography / methods
Diagnosis, Differential
Pulmonary Embolism / radiography*
Reproducibility of Results
Tomography, Spiral Computed / methods*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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