Your Radiology Report and How to Read It
Mar 20, 2017
A radiology report describing your diagnostic imaging results might be confusing to read if you’re not a healthcare provider. A radiology report includes complex anatomical and medical terms specifically written for healthcare providers.
A radiologist (a physician specially trained in medical imaging) reviews your medical history and analyzes your diagnostic imaging. Next, the radiologist writes a report detailing the results. A typical radiology reports includes these sections:
- Name or Type of Exam
- Date of Exam
- Interpreting Radiologist – the name of the radiologist who read the diagnostic imaging exam and wrote the report.
- Clinical History – describes the patient’s symptoms or existing diagnosis.
- Technique – technical details of the exam (such as “2-view x-ray” or “5mm axial images”), and if contrast was used.
- Comparison – if this exam was compared to any previous diagnostic imaging exams. Comparisons are most commonly made to exams of the same body area.
- Findings – what was “found” out from the exam, listing each area of the body that was examined in the diagnostic imaging study. Oftentimes, the radiologist will use the word “unremarkable” if an area is normal.
- Impression – this is the radiologist’s “impression” or diagnosis of the diagnostic imaging exam. This section includes a summary of the results and any follow up testing (like a biopsy or additional diagnostic imaging) that the radiologist recommends.
The radiology report is sent to your healthcare provider, who in turn provides the results to you.
Suburban Imaging strives to provide the highest level of service to our patients, healthcare providers and referring clinics. The exceptional care you receive from our radiologists, imaging technologists and professional staff ensures the most accurate and timely results. Reports are sent to your healthcare provider within 24 hours of your exam.