Patient Information Referral and FollowUp

For patients and the population in general, particularly those considering a screening test, easy access to information regarding the procedure and clear communication with the providers are also important. There should exist within a department a means by which patients can be informed of the procedure, the necessary preparation, potential risks and complications, implications of a normal and abnormal result and what mechanism for follow-up exists. The most practical way of achieving this would be through printed literature on the test and access to a liaison staff member such as a nurse or radiographer who has been specifically trained.

We agree with Mark. E. Klein, Washington Radiology Associates who recently spoke at the 5th International Virtual Colonoscopy Conference that a department introducing a CT colonography service would be well advised to perform a 'mini study' on the first 40 patients with conventional colonoscopy correlation in each case. This gives the radiologist a valuable opportunity to become familiar with all aspects of the technique and to address organisational issues including the process of patient referrals, timing of appointments, the staffing and infrastructure required, optimal bowel preparation and distension, to become familiar with the reading software and issues related to interpretation and to consider mechanism for follow-up when required.

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