A study on data pertaining to 6,351 patients who underwent SPECT myocardial perfusion imaging at six sites between March 1, 2008, and February 28, 2009, found that the tests for about one in seven patients were inappropriate. The tests were assessed using a computer algorithm based on appropriate-use criteria developed by several professional groups. The algorithm could help physicians determine more accurate tests and avoid the inappropriate ones, the researchers said.
A survey of 300 primary care physicians found that half of all respondents and 60% of those using electronic health records said they were more likely to report adverse events using an EHR system. The survey from Pfizer also showed almost 60% of respondents thought adverse-event reporting using an EHR would improve patient safety.
In a study of 138 patients with stable coronary artery disease who underwent mental stress tests, gated equilibrium radionuclide ventriculography showed that 26 patients experienced myocardial ischemia during the tests. A follow-up of a median of 5.9 years showed 17 nonfatal myocardial infarctions and 15 deaths. The events occurred more in patients who became ischemic during the psychological tests. The findings suggest that mental stress can trigger changes in heart functions that could lead to adverse events, the researchers said.
Siemens Healthcare has launched syngo.via, a new software with the capacity to read images from various modalities. The software combines outputs from Siemens' MRI, CT and PET/CT scanners with those of the syngo.plaza PACS system. The technology has applications in several fields, including cardiology, oncology and neurology.
The Senate has started hearings on the American Medical Isotopes Production Act of 2009, which would allow for the domestic production of molybdenum-99 using low-enriched uranium. The House of Representatives already has passed the legislation. Among those who testified in favor of the bill are Department of Energy official Dr. Parrish Staples, National Research Council official Kevin D. Crowley and Federal Affairs Senior Director Roy Brown, an official of the Council on Radionuclides and Radiopharmaceuticals.