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Blogs by Radiologists on various issues related to Radiology Practice, Radiologist' life and other observations.

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Few more tips in writing the report

I will continue from where I left in the previous post. These are few of the tips, which is known to one and all. I will highlight their importance with few examples.

  • Start with the main abnormality and add supporting radiological abnormalities centered around it.

Example: Instead of writing,

"Significant hydronephrosis is seen in the left kidney. The right kidney is normal. The left ureter is also dilated...."

and somewhere in next paragraph,

"There is a large soft tissue mass in the retroperitoneum encasing the aorta and left ureter",

it is better to say,

"A large retroperitoneal soft tissue attenuation mass is shown encasing the aorta and left ureter, leading to moderate left hydronephrosis."

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Structure of the Report

We have seen what to avoid in reporting. Before I proceed to few more tips in reporting, let us look in depth about the structure of radiological report.


The radiological report can be divided into 4 parts:

1. Heading/Type of examination
2. Technique/Protocol
3. Description/Main report/Findings
4. Conclusion/Summary/Comment


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Translation of images to words

"An actor in his 60s, 61/2 tall, well built with a French beard, has a voice of loin. Did you get him?"


No guess work here, you all are right, he is Amitabh Bachan. A few appropriate words are more than enough to give the picture in words.


Now imagine the same sentence is given to a man, who does not know Bollywood and does not watch Indian television. Even if you describe Amitabh Bachan in 200 pages, he cannot make out whom you are talking about, unless you tell in the beginning that you are talking about Amitabh Bachan, a Bollywood actor.


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Posted by on in General

Our great musician Naushad (now late Naushad) fell sick and was admitted to King Fahad University Hospital in Saudi Arabia where he had gone to perform Umrah. I along with a skin specialist went to see him. There an Indian doctor asked the skin specialist, "How many Indian doctors are there in your center?" And the reply was we are four consultants, one Radiologist and a Pathologist. He did not show the courtesy of introducing me to him that he is our Radiologist. I felt more sick than Naushad.

I do have a feeling that since we are not writing prescriptions the clinicians do not consider us any where near them as far as profession is considered and so when I read Dr. Bhavin Jankharia's editorial in IJRI August 2008 issue where he says "we must subspecialize and be able to speak the same language as our clinical colleagues". I was elated. I feel like beating the clinicians on their own turf.

It is possible if we try to know the things like-

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