CT colonography, which is a highly effective colorectal screening test, is feasible in rural health centers with the help of teleradiology, according to a study performed at the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ.
Remote CT colonography (CTC) was performed on 86 patients at two remote medical centers (343 and 337 miles from the University). Technologists at the facilities performed CTC on the patients and the data obtained was then sent to a local teleradiology server where it was uploaded to a CTC workstation and interpreted by an off-site radiologist. “Out of the 86 patients who had CTC examinations, we obtained 77 technically satisfactory examinations,” said Arnold Friedman, MD, FACR, lead author of the study.
“In many remote health centers there are not enough personnel and resources to use optical colonoscopy as a colorectal cancer screening test. Most centers have CT machines modern enough to do these exams but do not have the resources to perform optical colonoscopy screening. This is an excellent model for rural centers,” said Dr. Friedman.
“Availability of CTC permits access to a robust method of colorectal screening for these rural patients. Using an existing teleradiology network is the most cost efficient way to get the datasets for interpretation,” he said.