ACR Releases New Appropriateness Criteria
New evidence-based guidelines to help health care providers choose the most appropriate medical imaging exam for a patient’s clinical condition are now available via the latest version of the American College of Radiology (ACR) Appropriateness Criteria®. The new version contains updates of more than 40 appropriateness criteria topics, as well as seven new criteria. Included in the latter category are abdominal aortic aneurysm, interventional planning and follow-up, management of vertebral compression fractures, acute trauma to the foot, hematospermia, advanced cervical cancer, the role of adjuvant therapy in the management of early stage cervical cancer, and adjuvant therapy for resected squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. The criteria incorporate more than 175 topics and more than 850 available variants from expert panels in breast, cardiac, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal, neurologic, thoracic, urologic, pediatric, vascular, and women’s imaging, as well as interventional radiology and radiation oncology. Employing the ACR Appropriateness Criteria assists referring physicians and other health care providers in formulating the most appropriate imaging or treatment decision for a specific clinical condition, thereby enhancing quality of care and contributing to the most efficacious use of radiology, says Michael Bettmann, MD, chair of the ACR Appropriateness Criteria committee. “ACR Appropriateness Criteria provide education and guidance — for patients and doctors — on how best to use imaging,” Bettmann asserts. “They are an excellent resource for any health care provider considering ordering an imaging study. We strongly urge radiologists to encourage their referring physicians to consider use of ACR Appropriateness Criteria in their clinical decision making.” Physicians can access the criteria through all major mobile platforms and Windows desktop PCs via the ACR Anytime, Anywhere™ app powered by Skyscape. More information about the ACR Appropriateness Criteria®, including the new Anytime, Anywhere™ application, is available at www.acr.org/ac.