What do Family Physicians Know about Interventional Radiology? A Survey of Family Physicians at a Large Canadian Annual Scientific Assembly Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • PURPOSE: To quantify the level of background knowledge among family physicians with regard to interventional radiology (IR) procedures, duties, and clinical responsibilities and to develop recommendations on how to further educate family physicians in IR. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Paper surveys were administered to family physicians who attended the Ontario College of Family Physicians' Annual Scientific Assembly. Each survey consisted of 14 questions pertaining to IR procedures, clinical duties, collaboration, and education. RESULTS: A total of 213 of 229 (93%) attempted paper surveys were completed. Family physicians rated their knowledge of IR as poor (31%), adequate (53%), good (14%), or excellent (2%). A total of 98%, 71%, 47%, and 38% correctly identified that interventional radiologists performed image-guided biopsies, uterine artery embolization, radiofrequency ablation of tumors, and vascular angioplasties, respectively. Only 7% correctly identified that interventional radiologists are currently not recognized as distinct subspecialists by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Approximately 71% would refer patients directly to an interventional radiologist. A total of 96% believed that future education about IR would be "very" or "somewhat" helpful. Approximately 43% selected presentations given by interventional radiologists at family medicine conferences as their preferred method of future education. CONCLUSIONS: The data quantify and demonstrate the knowledge gap that exists among family physicians in Canada regarding IR procedures, duties, and responsibilities. Family physicians strongly support future education and collaboration with interventional radiologists. Eight results-based recommendations are made to further educate family physicians about IR and promote increased collaboration.

publication date

  • August 2010

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