Science & Education
A diagnostic mammogram for a new palpable lump shows an obviously malignant lesion. The radiologist realizes a mistake was made in her prior interpretation of this woman’s last screening mammogram. Prior films had apparently been put up in reverse order, and the radiologist mistakenly concluded that the calcifications were decreasing in number when they were actually increasing. The radiologist’s prior incorrect interpretation has resulted in a delayed diagnosis.
Question 2: Which response best depicts what information most radiologists would provide to the patient about the mammogram, after informing her that the diagnostic workup shows calcifications that are suspicious for cancer?
Would not say anything further to the patient.
“The calcifications are larger and are now suspicious for cancer.”
“The calcifications may have increased on yourlast mammogram, but their appearance was not as worrisome as they are now.”
“An error occurred during the interpretation of your last screening mammogram, and the calcifications had actually increased, not decreased in number.”
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