Web-Based Patient Information on Scans Eases Concerns

August 20, 2018

18F-FDG PET/CT examination procedures may be optimized with improved patient information and care.

Web-based educational information regarding upcoming FDG-PET/CT scans can ease patient concern and improve experience, according to a study published in the Journal of Nuclear Medicine Technology.

Researchers from Sweden investigated the effect of web-based patient information on patient satisfaction with care during an 18F-FDG PET/CT examination, their knowledge about the examination and the image quality, compared with standard care, and to explore the usage of and satisfaction with web-based information.

A total of 148 patients participated in the trial. They were randomly assigned to Standard Care (SC) or an Intervention Group (IG). The patients in the SC received information about the 18F-FDG PET/CT examination according to standard care. Those in the IG also received access to web-based information about the examination. A questionnaire was used to evaluate patient satisfaction, knowledge and discomfort and a blinded image quality assessment was conducted.

The results showed that overall satisfaction was high in both the IG and SC, although only 54 of the 75 patients (72 percent) actually accessed the web-based information prior to their examination. The lowest satisfaction concerned the information about how the patients would receive the results about the PET/CT examination. More patients in IG than SC knew how the 18F-FDG PET/CT examination was conducted. Descriptive data suggest that image quality was slightly better in IG than SC, but there were no statistically significant differences between the groups regarding any of the outcomes.

The IG patients who did use the web-based information indicated they were satisfied and found it helpful.

The researchers concluded that the effects of web-based information need to be investigated in a larger sample of patients because improved information before an 18F-FDG PET/CT examination may increase patient knowledge and help them to prepare and undergo the examination. It may also improve image quality.