Coulton, S. and Brearley, S. and Atwell, C. and Bryan, S. and Cox, H. and Russell, I. (2008) Effectiveness of GP access to magnetic resonance imaging of the knee: a randomised trial. British Journal of General Practice, 58 (556). e1-e9. ISSN 1478-5242.
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BACKGROUND: GPs commonly see patients with knee problems. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the knee is an accurate diagnostic test for meniscus and ligament injuries of the knee, but there is uncertainty about the appropriate use of MRI and when it should enter the diagnostic pathway for patients with these problems. AIM: To assess the effectiveness of GP referral to early MRI and a provisional orthopaedic appointment, compared with referral to an orthopaedic specialist without prior MRI for patients with continuing knee problems. Design of study: Pragmatic multicentre randomised trial with two parallel groups. SETTING: A total of 553 patients consulting their GP about a continuing knee problem were recruited from 163 general practices at 11 sites across the UK. METHOD: Patients were randomised to MRI within 12 weeks of GP referral including a provisional orthopaedic appointment, or orthopaedic appointment without prior MRI within a maximum of 9 months from GP referral. The primary outcome measures were the Short Form 36-item (SF-36) physical functioning scale and the Knee Quality of Life 26-item Questionnaire (KQoL-26) at 6, 12, and 24 months. RESULTS: Patients randomised to MRI improved mean SF-36 physical functioning scores by 2.81 (95% confidence interval [CI] = -0.26 to 5.89) more than those referred to orthopaedics (P = 0.072). Patients randomised to MRI improved mean KQoL-26 physical functioning scores by 3.65 (95% CI = 1.03 to 6.28) more than controls (P = 0.007). There were no other significant differences. CONCLUSION: GP access to MRI yielded small, but statistically significant, benefits in patients' knee-related quality of life but non-significant improvements in physical functioning.
|Uncontrolled keywords:||cost–benefit analysis, family practice, knee injuries, magnetic resonance imaging|
|Subjects:||R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > R Medicine (General) > R729 Types of medical practice > R729.5.G4 General practice
R Medicine > RZ Other systems of medicine
|Divisions:||Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Centre for Health Services Studies|
|Depositing User:||Simon Coulton|
|Date Deposited:||20 Apr 2009 11:17|
|Last Modified:||14 Feb 2013 16:18|
|Resource URI:||http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/16993 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)|
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